Sunday, April 21, 2019 – Easter Sunday
“While the women were perplexed about this, suddenly two men in dazzling clothes stood beside them. The women were terrified and bowed their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living dead? Jesus is not here, but has risen. Remember how Jesus told you, while he was still in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be handed over to sinners, and be crucified, and on the third day rise again.” [Luke 24:4-7]
The glory of Easter has dawned for the tomb stands empty. The women had come to the tomb numbed by grief, yet resolute in their desire to properly prepare Jesus’ body for burial. Yet, instead of a shroud wrapped body, they encountered two individuals in dazzling clothes. I personally cannot imagine the disorientation experienced by these women that morning. They expected the silence of a cold stone tomb, not words from divine messengers. Though the women were terrified, they remembered Jesus’ words and in their remembering they went to tell others. What are you willing to tell others about today? Is Easter merely a historical event to retell year after year or does what happened still have power to transform lives today? Like the women who went to the tomb, I testify to the power of the resurrection for I have seen lives transformed; have you? Christ is alive and the power that raised Christ continues to bring forth life from places of death today. In the wilderness of our world, could it be that we need to, in the words of Wendell Berry, “practice resurrection.”
Resurrecting God, the miracle of Easter is perplexing. Christ is alive, yet death is still very real in the wildernesses of this world. Death is all around us; so help me to hold fast to the miracle of Easter Morn. Give me the courage to practice resurrection every day of my life, as I call forth life in the face of death, refusing to let death or deadness have the final word. Let joy take up residency in my life as I remember your incredible gift of self-emptying love and faithfulness. Amen.