The power of the resurrection is at work right now
April 3, 2023
It’s hard for us to wrap our minds around the idea of “resurrection.” There are some good analogies in the realm of nature: the caterpillar and the butterfly, the seed and the plant, the bud and the rose. Yet, Easter is more than the scent of lilies and the rolling of eggs or the “newness” of springtime. In fact, it’s more than remembering that the body of Jesus was “raised from the dead.” And it even goes beyond our hopeful anticipation that one day we will be raised from physical death to the eternal life of heaven. Easter is about an invitation in this present moment for each of us – to pass from captivity to freedom, from death to life, from illusion to what really matters most. The truth is simply this: Jesus is alive!!
At the beginning of Lent, we put ashes on our foreheads: a sobering reminder of our mortality and a stark invitation to identify what needs to die, to be burned away in order for us to grow spiritually. During Lent, we took a good look at ourselves, honestly acknowledging our pettiness, pride, and selfishness. We have struggled with our weaknesses and broken promises. We have longed and yearned for something new, for a power and strength to awaken us and put life back into our tired, stressful and seemingly empty lives.
But on Easter Sunday and throughout the 50-day Easter Season, we celebrate the truth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. He is alive! The Risen Lord challenges us to see this gift of life right here: before our very eyes! From the moment of our baptism when he claimed us as his very own, God in Jesus Christ is healing us and eagerly encouraging the very best in us. It’s not something we need to do or accomplish. We are invited simply to open our hearts to the identity given to us, to the mind-blowing gift of God’s unconditional love and to a new spirit of energy, love and hope in every facet of our lives.
Easter pushes us out of the tombs of self-absorption and challenges us to discover fulfillment in loving service. Easter thrusts us from lifeless cemeteries of loneliness and isolation into the loving embrace of Christ in our family, church, and community. Easter dares us to look around the rocks we stumble over and find paths of peace and forgiveness.
The power of the resurrection is at work right now. And this power, this great triumph over sin and death, has the ability to fill all the emptiness inside of us – the wounds, the brokenness, the sorrow and even the sin. Through the Holy Spirit, the power of the resurrection has been unleashed on the world, ready to transform every darkness into light, every bit of despair into hope, every disappointment into a possibility, and every daily “death” we endure into something filled with life – new life – a whole new way of being, seeing, acting and experiencing whatever comes our way as we make our journey through life.