Community celebrates Easter with sunrise service
April 29, 2011
- Fort McPherson and Fort Gillem community
- flagpole on Hedekin Field
- Last Sunrise service
Members of the Fort McPherson and Fort Gillem community rose early Easter morning to celebrate the rising of their savior.
The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the keystone of the Christian faith, as the resurrection symbolizes victory over death and sin.
"If you can't get excited about the resurrection of Jesus, I don't know what can," said Chap. (Lt. Col.) Bob Phillips, U.S. Army Garrison chaplain, as he welcomed the congregation to mass at the flagpole on Hedekin Field at Fort McPherson.
Despite the 7 a.m. start time, the crowd was energized through song by Ray West, a retired master sergeant and Fort McPherson Post Chapel music director, and Christian recording artist Jamie Grace.
Chap. (Col.) David Colwell, Third Army/U.S. Army Central command chaplain, delivered the sermon entitled "A Day That Changed Everything." With the recent abundance of superhero themed movies, shows and comics resurging back in mainstream culture, Colwell spoke about how Jesus was like a superhero yet different. "What is the difference between Jesus and a superhero'" Colwell asked. "Jesus came to save our souls and to save us from our wounds, not from a meteorite."
Colwell also spoke about how Jesus always did the will of the Father, even when doing so lead to His death on the cross. Likewise, Colwell challenged attendees to do God's will. Just like Jesus faced struggles while doing God's will, Colwell said people will also experience difficulties when following God's will.
However, he said Christ can be found in those times, even if people, like the Jesus' disciples after the resurrection, don't recognize Jesus' presence. "The risen savior watches us in ways we least expect," Colwell said, adding that he learned the most during difficult times from Jesus holding onto him.
He also spoke of Jesus' ability to heal, noting that nearly a fourth of the accounts of Jesus life in the gospels speak of His miracles. That healing, especially of the soul, he said, is still available to people today.
While the Easter celebration may only be a day, the implications of it carry through every day of a person's life. Because of this, Colwell closed by challenging attendees to live a life according to God's plan like Jesus. "Every day keep in mind that you want to do God's will," he said.