Ciara Lilly is a Charlotte-area writer. Her faith-based column, Fishers of Men, is published here each Monday. Opinions expressed are solely her own.

Text: Matthew 28

Over the last week, I’ve heard the following statement repeatedly, “It is not over.” I went to Bible study and even my instructor said the same statement, “It is not over.” And, of course, my first reaction was to ask God, “What’s not over?”

Now, I don’t know about you, but I believe in the Holy Spirit. And I believe that if asked a question, the Holy Spirit will intercede on God’s behalf. So when I asked God, “What’s not over?” The Holy Spirit brought to my mind every situation in my life that was disguised as a defeat. What I’ve counted as a loss is not over; and what I’ve stood believing God for, is not over, despite how long it’s taken to manifest. It is not over.

And because I held this in my Spirit for so long, I knew it wasn’t just for me. I knew that I needed to share with someone these words: It is not over.

For you, the “it” may be different than what it was for me. You may be facing colossal trials right now; things that I have never experienced, but thank God there’s no trial that catches Him by surprise. And we, as believers in Christ, are fully equipped with all that we need to walk into our victory.

So as always, I never like to share anything without having scriptural backup. And one of the best biblical examples of “It is not over” is found in Jesus’ crucifixion.

Just think about it. If you were a follower of Jesus Christ back then, you watched Him go around and teach and heal everyone. You heard His messages, you saw the miracles and then you witnessed Him being killed by those who opposed His teachings. In our natural minds, we could easily process that as a defeat. We would, as Jesus’ disciples and family did, mourn and grieve over His death. But let’s take a look at what can happen when God says, “It’s not over.”

“… But the angel said to the women, Do not be alarmed and frightened, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, Who was crucified. 6: He is not here; He has risen, as He said [He would do]. Come, see the place where He lay.” — Matthew 28:5-6 (AMP)

Now, let’s process this. Jesus was crucified. He was buried and due to the fear of the Pharisees, His tomb was well- guarded and permanently sealed shut. They were trying everything they could to ensure that He could not possibly rise again. Do you feel that way sometimes? Like situations or people are trying everything they can to ensure you will rise again?

But what happened when Mary Magdalene and Mary arrived at Jesus’ tomb? He was not there! He had risen just as He said He would! They even met up with Jesus on the way to spreading the word about His resurrection, so they saw it with their very eyes. And they, too, realized, not that Jesus hadn’t been telling them all along, which is normally how He is with us, that it was not over just because He was crucified.

Before we lie down and accept defeat, remember that God is always whispering, “It is not over” in our ears. And if we hold Him to His Word, if we hold onto His hand and remember who He is and who we are in Him, we will see a resurrection of opportunities, finances, health, joy and every good and perfect thing.

“For the Lord your God is the one who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies to give you victory.” — Deuteronomy 20:4 (NIV)

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