“Awake, My Heart, with Gladness”
Easter Hymn 467 stanzas 1-3
1. Awake, my heart, with gladness, See what today is done;
Now, after gloom and sadness, Comes forth the glorious sun.
My Savior there was laid where our bed must be made
When to the realms of light our spirit wings its flight.
2. The foe in triumph shouted when Christ lay in the tomb;
But lo, he now is routed, His boast is turned to gloom.
For Christ again is free; In glorious victory
He who is strong to save has triumphed o’er the grave.
3. This is a sight that gladdens—What peace it doth impart!
Now nothing ever saddens the joy within my heart.
No gloom shall ever shake, No foe shall ever take
The hope which God’s own Son in love for me has won.
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Recently, it seems that the dark days of the unknown are ever changing and extending. In a time when we are separated from one another, we are reminded in Romans 8 that we are never separated from the love of Christ. Nothing can separate us from this love. His love conquers all. We find hope in the love God showed us when He sent His only Son to die on the cross for the forgiveness of our sins. Christ has triumphed over the enemy: death. There is no fear of the foe and our hearts are filled with joy. Jesus shines through the darkness. Easter brings us the joy of Christ’s resurrection.
Easter 2020 was not the same as past Easters. In hymn 467 “Awake, My Heart, with Gladness,” we sing about the joy of the resurrection. We have progressed through the dark 40 days of lent in repentance and the sorrow of Good Friday was felt to our bones, but Easter morning we awake with gladness. What great joy we find in Christ’s resurrection! Through our baptism we were buried with Christ into death with the promise of a resurrection like His. Christ is risen! His is risen indeed. Alleluia!
We will one day be able to leave our homes with joy. Our hearts will awaken with gladness as we once again worship together in the church building. We will receive the sweetness of Christ’s body and blood on our tongues at the Lord’s Supper where we join all of God’s saints.
We will be reunited with family and friends. This time of isolation from each other will come to an end. Remember: we are never isolated from God.
Dear Heavenly Father, You sent Your only Son to die on the cross for the forgiveness of our sins. We thank you for uniting us with Christ through our baptism. Keep us in steadfast love towards You and one another as we await Christ’s second coming in joy. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
-Amanda Korthase is a student in the deaconess studies program at Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, IN.