If we have learnt anything from the past year it is how fragile our lives on earth really are. We have also learnt much about our humanity, both good and bad. If we are honest that includes ourselves.
Remember last year when we all thought here was an opportunity to “re-set” everything from our work places to the economy, to how states related to each other, how to “be” church, and in our own personal priorities? Hopefully some good things have come out of a challenging time – and I believe that has happened. But maybe we were all a bit ambitious about that. Our old habits and ways of relating die hard. We go back to our default settings and ways of relating.
Right now there are many hurting, anxious and vulnerable people out there after an exhausting year, when old cracks in relationships and within ourselves are re-appearing. In it all our tendency to blame and victimize has risen to the surface again.
Injustice, conflict, expectations and a whole lot more are coming to the surface in many areas of life, and at a time when we seem less patient and still mentally weary from last year and so in a more fragile place to address and deal with things and relate to each other.
That is happening in politics, and it can happen in the church. Pastors have become vulnerable too, and some pastors will not be ministering over Easter because of it.
Thank God we can worship together in person this Easter, unlike last year.
On Good Friday we see Jesus the victim, exposing the worst of humanity as he is unjustly accused, his rights and dignity stripped from him, Jesus exhausted and praying alone in Gethsemane, and walking the lonely path to Calvary under the crushing weight of the world’s sin, including ours. Jesus suffering. Jesus crucified. Jesus dying. Jesus not only identifying with anyone who has felt that way but going through it all to forgive us for the way we ourselves have treated other people and a whole lot more.
On Easter day we see and celebrate together Jesus the victorious one, rising above what was done to him and rising from death itself. Jesus offering us more than hope beyond COVID, but hope beyond the grave.
Easter has always been helpful for me as it means everything else that happens in life now that causes suffering is not the last word or the end of all hope. Because Jesus suffered, he “gets it” when we do, and because he rose from the dead and promises us no less than that too, we can believe the best is always yet to come.
Easter is our daily re-set button as Christians, as we live in the death and resurrection that is our baptism, changing the way we look at everything, and the way we respond to everything and everyone.
Enjoy your Easter.
Dare to believe and live each day in its comfort and hope.