Happy Easter! He Is Risen!

Credit: Mike Ford

Credit: Mike Ford

Happy Easter, RedState! Our Lord and Savior is risen! As we celebrate his…and our…victory over death and his payment in blood for our enjoyment of life ever after, let us also make sure we also pay attention to our neighbors. Many of them have come to great harm due to this disease afflicting our country. As we talk the talk, we need to ensure we walk the walk.


All of us here at RedState realize that it is you, our readers, who we really work for. Thank you for keeping us employed by your readership.

The Lord Be With You…All.




From the Gospel according to John

Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the tomb. So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.” Then Peter and the other disciple set out and went toward the tomb. The two were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. He bent down to look in and saw the linen wrappings lying there, but he did not go in. Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb. He saw the linen wrappings lying there, and the cloth that had been on Jesus’ head, not lying with the linen wrappings but rolled up in a place by itself. Then the other disciple, who reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed; for as yet they did not understand the scripture, that he must rise from the dead. 10 Then the disciples returned to their homes.

11 But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb. As she wept, she bent over to look[a] into the tomb; 12 and she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had been lying, one at the head and the other at the feet. 13 They said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?” She said to them, “They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him.” 14 When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not know that it was Jesus. 15 Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you looking for?” Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.” 16 Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to him in Hebrew,[b] “Rabbouni!” (which means Teacher). 17 Jesus said to her, “Do not hold on to me, because I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and say to them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’” 18 Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord”; and she told them that he had said these things to her.


He is Risen. Happy Easter to everyone. Thanks for your support and assistance and forbearance over the past year and together we’ll get through what promises to be a tough and trying new year.





“But he was pierced for our rebellion and crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed.” –Isaiah 53:5

Rejoice — for He is risen! Wishing each of you a blessed Easter.


 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. – Romans 5:8

I can’t claim to be well-versed (no pun intended) in huge swaths of the Bible, but I do believe in God and what He promises us today. Imagine it: the creator of everything that ever was and ever will be loved us so much, He put His own son up as a sacrificial lamb. And then made things right through that sacrifice, so that we can life forever with him — without pain or sickness or death. It’s a pretty remarkable thing to consider.

By the way, the link above takes you to a whole page of verses relating to Easter and the Easter message.

I’ve been with RedState a week now, but you’ve already graciously welcomed me by reading and sharing my work. Together as Americans, if we seek out the positive, uplifting stories, I believe our nation can only be better on the other side of this crisis. Your support for me and the rest of RedState means more than I can express. Thank you!


So, on this Easter morning, dear readers, join me and my colleagues in saying: He is risen!

Happy Easter.



This Holy Week has been especially tough for me. My dad passed away April 10, 2017, on Monday of Holy Week, just 12 days after receiving a diagnosis of Acute Myeloid Leukemia. During various times in my adult years he and I were estranged, to the point that when I was pregnant with my youngest son he didn’t even know I was expecting until I was six months pregnant (in 2003). When I divorced in 2011, he and I reconciled fully, and finally I had the relationship with him I had always wanted. In October 2011, my dad suffered a major stroke and lost control of the left side of his body and a good deal of his swallowing capacity. Eventually, I moved home to California to oversee his care, and he beat the odds – he survived five years after his stroke (95% of the people who suffer his type of stroke do not survive five years). Unfortunately, he lived within just a few miles of the Aliso Canyon natural gas field in Southern California, where a well blew out in 2015 and spewed benzene, methane, and other toxic gases into the atmosphere. Dad was diagnosed March 27, 2017, and died April 10, 2017.

This year, his death anniversary coincided with Good Friday. My dad’s wishes were to be buried at sea in the same cove in which his parents and niece were buried at sea – Gem Cove, Alaska. My kids and I had finally scheduled for that to take place in August, 2020, and that has been rescheduled, obviously. It’s been difficult because so much is different this year. But the same thing that brought me peace in 2017 brings me peace in 2020: Through Christ we can find redemption in our relationships in this life, and through the name and sacrifice of Jesus Christ, our Savior, we will overcome the grave and our family will be together again.


In a different life, I met recording artist Hilary Weeks and got to know her (an amazingly wonderful, humble, and gracious woman). Her song, “Through His Name,” has always brought comfort to me when thinking of family members with whom I cannot wait to be reunited. On Friday, as I drove past Mt. McCoy, my youngest and I sang this song – as I did the night my dad passed:

Holy One
God over all the Earth
Heart of Lords
Child of Humble Birth
Bread of Life
Shepherd of our Souls
Sinless Son
Born to lead us home
Through His name
We can be saved
And we can live With Him again
Through the power of His name

Prince of Peace
The Bright and Morning Star
Lamb of God
Captain of our Hearts
Author and Finisher of our Faith
Almighty God
Conqueror of the Grave

Through His name
We can be saved
We can be saved
And we can live With Him again
Through the power of His name

I will praise His name forever and forever

Through His name
Through His name
We can be saved
We can be saved
And we can live With Him again
Through the power of His name

Listen to my friend’s song here – I can’t, without tears.

– Jennifer Van Laar


“This too shall pass.”

I love those words. I had always thought this phrase originated in the Bible. Although there are Bible verses that are close in meaning, we don’t see the exact words.

2 Corinthians 4:17-18 talks about troubles being temporary. “For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.”


There are countless stories about where this exact phrase first appeared. Here’s one I liked the best. It comes to us from Philip Pugh:

It comes from a Yiddish tale about King Soloman.

King Soloman wanted to teach Benaiah a lesson in humility. He told Benaiah “I have heard rumors of a fabulous ring that has a unique power. When a sad man gazes upon it, he becomes happy, but when a happy man gazes upon it, he becomes sad. Find this ring and bring it to me.”

Benaiah set out in search of the ring, but no one had ever heard of such a ring. He was about to give up when he spotted a junk shop. Benaiah approached the owner and described the object of his search.

“A ring that cheers the sad and saddens the cheerful?” said the junk dealer. “Come inside.”

They entered the shop. From a boxful of baubles the junk dealer took a plain, silver ring. He engraved some words on it and gave it to Benaiah. Benaiah read the inscription, nodded sagely, and headed back to the palace.

King Solomon was expecting an unsuccessful and humbled Benaiah. So when Benaiah strode in and handed him the ring, the king was taken aback. Inspecting it, he read the inscription and laughed, “It was I who needed a lesson in humility,” he said. “This ring has reminded me that wealth and power are fleeting things.” King Solomon removed his costly rings and slipped on the ring from the junk shop.

The Yiddish phrase on engraved on the ring:

GAM ZU YAAVOR (“This too shall pass”)


As we move through this “plague” together, we know that, one day at a time, it is passing. Consider all that has passed in just the last three months – an impeachment trial, the Democratic primaries and now something none of us have experienced before, at least on this magnitude. And one day, this too shall have passed.

Thank you to all of our readers. Even though we haven’t met in person, through our shared experiences and communications, we are connected.

Happy Easter to everyone.

Betsy Vaughn



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