Imagine the crew that Ernest Shackleton left behind, hopelessly stuck in Antarctic ice, facing a certain, slow, agonizing death by freezing, as he attempted to go for help. If you are not familiar with how far he needed to hike and then sail to find rescue, look it up. It’s one of the most astounding adventures of all time. But the guys left behind, huddled together, day after frozen day, with death circling like a wolf: how deep their despair must have been.
And how great their joy when one day, a speck on the horizon appeared, to let them know that Shackleton had returned, that he was not dead and that they were about to become the benefactors of a most improbable rescue! If you can grasp a sliver of their amazement, their blinking wonder and joy, then perhaps you can glimpse a portion of the disciples’ joy when they saw and touched Jesus after His resurrection.
Later, Peter wrote these words:
“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead…” (1 Peter 1:3)
As each person discovers that “speck on the horizon” and recognizes Jesus coming for them, they catch the full glow of Peter’s words. Not many of us can write music like Handel, but we can all jump up and sing “Hallelujiah!”