It is a week since Easter Sunday and we have just celebrated Earth Day and Good Seed Sunday. Here in the Pacific NW we are watching the emergence of new life as trees burst into bloom and perennials burst fresh from the ground. . I have put away lenten images and redecorated my sacred space with images of new life and resurrection to match the joy of the season.
It seems however that in many ways resurrection has passed us by. We are back to life as usual. Just as the disciples returned to their nets, unsure what to do with the rumours of Jesus reappearance, we are unsure what do with resurrection in our own lives.
These pivotal days of our faith seem to make little difference in the way we live. Why I wonder? Why aren’t we transformed by the resurrection?
Living Into the Resurrection Seems so Overwhelming for Us.
Perhaps it’s because living into the resurrection seems so overwhelming for us. We think we need to dash off to be a missionary in some other part of the world. Or we need to give up the job we love to work with the homeless in the inner city. Or we need to sell all our possessions to live with the poor.
Yet that is not what resurrection is all about. This is a season of light and joy and believe it or not, light and joy don’t take spectacle to live out. Jesus did such mundane everyday things in the days of his reappearance and looked so ordinary that his disciples didn’t always recognize him.
What is your response?
What are the joy spots in your life that speak of resurrection living? Take time to reflect on your life and how it has been changed by your relationship with Christ. What are the daily, weekly and seasonal activities that you feel most represent the joy of resurrection living. How could you express that joy in this resurrection season?
The risen Jesus seemed like a very ordinary person. If we were in charge of his PR campaign there would have been neon signs in the sky, interviews on CNN, audiences with world leaders. Approaching this Jesus would have been impossible, and following in his footsteps totally unimaginable. But that was not how Jesus came.
- He came to Mary as a gardener not as a king. He was so ordinary that she did not recognize him at first, after all who really looks closely at the servant who tends the gardens?
- He made breakfast on the beach for his friends. Again it took them a while to recognize him. And it needed a bit of a miracle – 153 large fish weighing down their nets – for them to truly see who he was. Perhaps their eyes skimmed past him because of the ordinariness of how he looked and how he acted.
- He came as a stranger and walked for a whole day explaining the scriptures to a couple of his disciples before they recognized him. A stranger who walked rather than riding in a carriage is hardly a king, let alone the risen son of God.
- He comes to the disciples, afraid and hiding behind closed doors. He let them touch him, calmed their fears and sent them out to change the world.
Resurrection living is not complicated. It is about ordinary people doing ordinary things just as Jesus did – simple acts of hospitality, companionship to the fearful, talking to strangers. These were the things that brought the joy of resurrection living into the lives of those early disciples.
What is your response?
How could you more effectively live into the resurrection at this season? Are there situations in which you could offer breakfast to your colleagues or friends? Or perhaps you could take some kids out for a hike, talk to them about their life concerns and answer their questions. Or maybe their are strangers at church whom you could ask out for a cup of coffee and a chat. The possibilities are endless. How could you practice the joy of resurrection living today?