Those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake, and for the sake of the gospel, will save it. — Mark 8:35 (NRSV)
Greetings in the name of Jesus as we travel through the seasons of Lent and Easter.
In this season, we journey with Jesus to the cross, the tomb, the empty tomb, and his appearance to the disciples in — among other places — the upper room. We’ll encounter triumph, defeat, life, death, uncertainty, despair, comfort — the whole range of human emotions and experience as we read the scriptures during this season.
As you spend time with God (and millions of other Christians) each day through the pages of The Upper Room these next two months, you will discover the same breadth of experience in the witness of our writers. There will be stories of triumph, memories of defeat, uncertainty, and despair, times of distress and comfort. All things that Jesus, and those who were around him, experienced in the days before and after Easter.
Of course it’s Easter that makes the difference for us. Were it not for Easter and the promises it brings, even our triumphs, our successes, our moments of brilliance would ring hollow. And facing difficult times would seem impossible. By joining together in this community of prayer and reflection, we join our stories together and are encouraged by one another as we grow closer to God in the light of the resurrection. Our prayer is that you will find encouragement here.
At The Upper Room we are moving through this season with renewed energy and dedication for spreading the gospel around the world through the pages of this magazine. Thank you for being a reader. We are ever grateful for your prayers and support.
Executive Director, Upper Room Publishing
Beatrice Smith delivers copies of The Upper Room daily devotional guide to a retirement home in Cape Town, South Africa. "Residents are delighted to receive the magazine," she says of a recent visit. Learn more about the international editions of The Upper Room here.