Rick Warren to Deliver 'Highly Personal' Message, Says Easter Story Answers Even Life's Most Devastating Questions

( [email protected] ) Apr 16, 2014 04:36 PM EDT
Pastor Rick Warren
Pastor Rick Warren speaks at the historic Mental Health and the Church Conference on March 27, 2014. (Photo: Screen Capture of Conference/The Gospel Herald)

Rick Warren has a personal message for his viewers.

The "Purpose Driven Life" author and pastor at Saddleback Church in Southern California released a video on Facebook yesterday morning, saying the message of Easter delivers the answer to all of life's difficulties and will be the focal point of his Holy Week sermons.

"Do you ever find yourself discouraged, or depressed or defeated, or even devastated by the circumstances in your life?" he asks, "If so, let me take a minute to encourage you about the pathway to hope and change and transformation that I've found in the Easter story of the resurrection of Jesus."

Warren is no stranger to devastation. One year ago, the pastor's 27 year old son Matthew "gave into despair," losing his battle with depression and ending his own life.

Shortly after, Warren told CNN, "I have cried every single day since Matthew died. But that's actually a good thing. Grief is a good thing. It's the way we get through the transitions of life.

Related: One Year After Son's Suicide, Kay Warren Ready to Move On, Declares 'God's Not Helpless Among this Ruins'

However, the pastor is now using the tragedy to inspire others.

"[It] was the worst day of my life," Warren says, "During the past year, I've often been asked, 'How have you made it? How have you kept going in your pain?' and I've often replied, 'The answer is Easter.'"

"You see the death, and the burial, and the resurrection of Jesus happened over three days. Friday was the day of suffering and pain and agony. Saturday was the day of doubt and confusion and misery. But Easter, that Sunday, was the day of hope and joy and victory," Warren explains.

"Here's the fact of life: You will face these three days over and over and over in your lifetime. And when you do, you'll find yourself asking, as I did, three fundamental questions. Number one, what do I do in my days of pain? Two, how do I get through my days of doubt and confusion. Three, how do I get to the days of joy and victory?

"The answer is Easter."

Related: What Is The Meaning of Easter for Christians? Life of Jesus Christ 

Warren hopes to share what he learned through his son's death in his Easter message.

"I will share the answers to these three great questions based on what I learned on the worst year of my life. This will be the most personal, the most powerful, and the most encouraging message I've ever shared."

Warren invites viewers to tune into any of the fifty Easter services offered at twelve Southern California locations beginning Thursday through Sunday evening. The services will also be available for viewing online.