[March 31, 2024]

Heartland Community Church


The Victory Before the Battle

by Chris Woodward

We all love the moment when victory is sealed; the wideout crosses the goal line on the final play, the last strike sails past the bat, and the sound of leather thumps through our ears. When the net dances as the last shot rips through. At that moment, our hearts pound in anticipation of a life-changing experience. For some, it is the last pen stroke on a deal that has taken months to put together; for others, it is the sweet kiss of a newborn. No matter how we measure victory in this time and age, there is one immeasurable victory.

The victory over death at the tomb is the defining point of our history. Imagine the moments that unfolded as the devoted followers of Jesus put together the magnitude of his life and found out that he had brought victory over the one thing that hung over the poor, the rich, the Jew, the Gentile, the King and the enslaved person—death itself. For me, the beauty of the moment of the resurrection is that statement, “He is no longer here.” It reads to me like Jesus did the two things humanity cannot do. Live a perfect, sinless life, and resurrect from a certain and brutal death. See, that is the victory, the one that counts. It makes every battle worthy. Every sleepless night becomes hope that Jesus, who went through death, understands the weight of our hearts, the pain of the moment, and knows he has felt the separation from his father, the heaviness of our sins, and walked through it with and for us. He came back to us to celebrate a way to bring us close, a way for us to move into his glory.

Can we, in our hearts, move into an awestruck moment where we place the victorious Son on the throne of our life and keep him there above all the other moments? All other victories, all other battles?


[Monday, April 1]

Matthew 28:16-20

Battle for Authority: I am not sure what is going on in your life right now, but I am sure that every one of us would enjoy hearing, “All authority has been given to me, on earth and in the heavens.” If you walked through today attempting to give Christ authority over your interactions, inner thoughts, and feelings, would that change your outcomes? Would this allow you to share the good news more upfront? Is there an area where Jesus needs authority in your life?


[Tuesday, April 2]

Mark 16:14-18

Battle for Purpose: In our culture, getting the last word appears popular. It seems to be the primary function of most of our online interactions. You know you have considered buying that milk “49ers tears” at the store for the past two weeks. Remember Jesus’s last words: to go to others and tell them about me. He reminds his followers amid their unbelief of what is most important. Are you seeking an opportunity to live out Jesus’s last words this week?


[Wednesday, April 3]

Luke 24:44-49

Battle for Clarity: Confusion appears to be the name of the game in some areas of my life. Most people I talk to are fearful or unwilling to communicate clearly without confusion. A clear and concise message is always the best communication. When did you last carry Jesus’ message throughout the day and to other people? What change would you make to create room for Jesus in your life? How could you put him in first place and share with others the difference he makes for you?


[Thursday, April 4]

John 20:19-23

Battle for Peace: Daily, I struggle with the lack of peace in the world, community, and my heart. Some days, it just feels like contention is where I live. Tension on where to put the time in and tension on the “next steps.” Imagine the struggle and stress the disciples are under as they are locked in a room hiding. “Peace be with you,” Jesus appears and changes the room’s mood, opens the doors, and moves them from fear to focus. When was the last time that you took the peace of Christ with you into your conversations with others? Where are you expecting to find peace with family and friends?


[Friday, April 5]

Acts 1:4-8

Battle as a Team: Gatherings are powerful; getting together with people with the same goals, ideals, and mission can be one of the most inspiring things we can do as humans. If you have ever had the opportunity to be on a team, you know that not everyone plays the game the same way. However, as Jesus-followers, a group witness can bring validation and comfort to others. This group of disciples is a positive example of how Jesus’ message of salvation and redemption can be shared with others. Find one thing you can take with you as personal inspiration.


{extra journey resources}

CLICK HERE to visit The Bible Project site and explore their super simple, super informative Bible videos (and other resources). You can also download The Bible Project App HERE.

CLICK HERE to get the Read Scripture App, from our friends at The Bible Project.

CLICK HERE for more on how to use the observe-reflect-apply approach to getting the most out of your Bible reading.

The Bible App Get the free YouVersion Bible for your phone, tablet, or computer. Experience the Bible anywhere, with options to highlight, save notes, and share what you are reading with others.

The Bible App For Kids YouVersion partnered with OneHope to develop the Bible App for Kids, designing it specifically to engage children with Bible stories on an age-appropriate level. The Bible App for Kids is a free app for Android, Apple, and Kindle devices, available in over 60 languages.

Bible Gateway Provides advanced Bible searching capabilities, which allow readers to find passages in scripture based on keywords, phrases, or scripture reference.

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© 2024 Heartland Community Church

12175 S Strang Line Road, Olathe, KS 66062

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