These past couple of weeks have been ones full of firsts and lasts. I participated in my first 5K (half-marathon, here I come!), helped host a booth at my university’s Culture Fair (participated AND hosted), and performed a dance in front of hundreds of people for the first time for Soul Night (also my first time even going). I also attended my last Associate’s Night at Brown, and just had my last spring recess as an undergrad; I’m also looking forward to my last three weeks in college.
So many firsts, so many lasts (pictures below)! Eeesh.
Almost like how I felt when I neared the end of East of Eden (one of my favorite books, but just imagine your own favorite, extra-long book here), it’s exhilarating to complete one chapter and begin the next, knowing you’re so close to finishing it. For me, the last chapter of my undergrad career is fast approaching, and a new one titled “Gap Year Before Medical School” is coming up, which I’m extremely excited for (I know, I know… no one wants to graduate yet, but bleh I’m ready). It’ll be a short, yet pivotal one that I’m sure to enjoy, whatever it may bring. Besides all that, reflecting on all these firsts and lasts I’ve experienced recently moved my mind to the subject of this week: Easter.
When I was younger, Easter used to be a day’s celebration for me of Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection. As I got older, Good Friday gradually also became a day of reflection on His immense sacrifice for us. Now, the whole week from Palm Sunday to Easter Sunday has become a time of reflection, meditation, and thankfulness as I am reminded of the salvation through grace I was so freely given long ago. And so, reflecting on the current state of my life – my various firsts and lasts – this past week reminded me of THE First and Last: Jesus. His sacrifice on the Cross (one of the readings in late April from Sparkling Gems from the Greek, a devotional book by Rick Renner, renders a heart-wrenchingly honest depiction of what death on a cross would have been like, so I recommend it if you’re interested in learning more) was the first, and only (so last), sacrifice needed to bring salvation to the world. While I will have many, many more firsts and lasts in my lifetime, Jesus is the starting and ending point of it all. Without Him being the First and the Last, I would never get a chance at any of my first-and-lasts! Everything I’ve experienced this past semester has been because of His wondrous grace, and because over 2000 years ago, He became that First and Last sacrifice I needed to live my life as fully as I do today.
So, thank you, Lord.
And happy Easter to everyone, because this… this time of remembrance and grateful celebration… this is truly the greatest time of the year.