It is so easy to be Covid weary. Who isn’t? I wish CBC news would report on something else. I wish I didn’t have to wear a mask AND I wish we were all back worshipping in our church this Easter. More importantly, as we chant our Alleluias proclaiming that “Christ is risen!” I am aware that we do so in the shadow of 2.7 million loved ones we’ve lost to COVID, that there have been stabbings and shootings, that there is terrible unemployment, that many are alone, depressed and anxious at this time and that there is racial tension, violence and injustice. Maybe this Eastertide, I need to hear once again the angel at the tomb saying, “Do not be afraid.”
Perhaps it is okay this Easter to do as the women, who were going to anoint Jesus’ body in the tomb, did when the angel told them of Jesus’ resurrection: to take a while and just ponder the significance of all of this; to sit with the thought that somehow God’s work of redemption collides in real time with the broken bewilderment of our lives. Maybe it is okay this Easter to just whisper our Alleluias.
This Easter, I am going to take some time to reflect upon all of this. Not really comprehend it, just turn it over in my mind. I am impatient for Spring, for solutions, for answers. Perhaps, though, this Easter must take root within me as imperceptibly as seeds break into life beneath the earth. As any gardener knows, the process of transformation is hidden from our eyes. Each year, new life is shrouded in mystery. Spring has a timeline of its own and seems imbued with fragility. Yet, each year, the tender shoots break through the soil and new life emerges. Every time.
I believe there is a life we cannot see, the life of God hidden within us, the life of God at large in our world, tenacious, dynamic, sure. Sometimes this life takes time to emerge and flourish. Yet it is life that is as certain as the Spring.
I do know that when we take something slowly, we can savor it. And right now, we need to savor life — even as daily pandemic death tolls continue, as the future feels a bit precarious, and many of us have fears. Receive the good news of the Resurrection slowly. Hold it, savor it, dwell in the story as you ponder it.
Hear once again the voice of the angel, “Do not be afraid; you are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has been raised; he is not here. Look, there is the place where they laid him.” Can you hear the angel? All that has been taken will be restored. Christ is risen, the grave is empty, love is eternal.