This is the story of salvation history. And because Christ died for your sins, this is your history, too.
"In the beginning . . . "
In the beginning God made the world and it was good. Sin entered in, the world fell, but God—in His tender mercy—made a plan to save it, to save us.
"God Himself will provide the sheep for the holocaust."
Abraham told his son those words as they climbed up the hill, not knowing what would happen in the following moments, let alone in the following centuries. And God did provide a male Sheep, His head entangled in a thorn bush, as the perfect holocaust.
"But I will make the Egyptians so obstinate that they will go in after them."
Through the generations mankind's hearts have been obstinate. My heart has been obstinate. God allows us to make our own choices, just as He allowed the Egypt's chariots and charioteers to choose, in their stubborn pride, to run straight into ruin. And yet:
"With great tenderness I will take you back . . . . With enduring love I take pity on you, says the Lord your redeemer."
Over and over again, day after day, century after century, God stayed true to us.
"I will renew with you the everlasting covenant."
The covenant is that we are God's. He has formed us in the stillness and the secret of our mothers' wombs, and His love for us is immeasurable. We are His, and He will not abandon us.
"Shine with joy for your Maker."
This Truth of who and Whose we are brings purpose and joy to our lives. Just as Israel responded to God with repentance and worship, so do we by the grace of God.
"I will give you a new heart . . . a new spirit . . . . You shall be My people and I will be your God."
Our relationship is restored time and time again and our understanding of and love for the Lord deepens.
"If we have died with Christ we shall also live with Him."
And this is the fulfillment of the covenant. The Lamb of God has taken away the sins of the world and through Him we can have everlasting life as the daughters of the King.
And so this tale of how God created and redeemed the world is your story, my story, our story and it will go on for eternity. As we live it out now, remember the words that were spoken at the Resurrection: "Do not be afraid."
Remember the tale of how much God loves you. Revel in this.
Bonnie Engstrom is a writer, baker, speaker and homemaker. She lives with her husband and six children in central Illinois. You can find out more about her here.