Thursday, April 24, 2014

Easter is all around

As I walked early this morning, I heard and saw spring all around. It shouted, Alleluia. Cardinals, robins, blackbirds were trilling; trees exploded in colors, their sap arising after a long winter's sleep, pushing shoots of green from their branches. The wind carried the sweet smell of lilacs. The rain-softened earth offered up tulips and daffodils. Creation surged with life.

God is behind it all--bringing forth life in response to the promptings of his love.

In the readings from the Prayer Book Daily Office for Easter Week (The Book of Common Prayer, page 959), Exodus tells the story of the Passover and of God delivering his chosen people, Israel, from the darkness and death of slavery in Egypt. The readings go on to recount how God leads an often fearful and wavering Israel into new, abundant life in the Promised Land, that land "flowing with milk and honey." Canaan is a kind of everlasting springtime.

The New Testament writings from Corinthians contain St. Paul's profound meditation on the meaning of Christ's resurrection for believers, while the Gospel readings tell in their particular ways that amazing story of Jesus' resurrection and of his miraculous appearances in his risen body. Once again, God is bringing freedom and new life out of the slavery of sin and of death. It is springtime.

God, who is love and life, is at work in creation, in the church, and in the lives of all people who put
their faith in the Risen Lord Jesus Christ.

Believing in him is committing ourselves to follow him, and when we do, we see him in all his power. He is continuing his work, freeing us from every tomb and from all our chains--be they addictions, selfishness, fear of the future, loneliness, depression. And for those of us who follow Jesus in faith from the tombs of this world, we find our Promised Land. That land is not a place, but a state of being called resurrection and our daily awareness that God is always greater than our problems, our pain, our suffering, even our deaths. Only God is almighty. Do we believe? How does our believing change our way of being and of living?

Easter is all around--in the glorious spring of bird songs and blossoms and beauty. And it is in us and in all who put their faith in Christ on earth, who proclaim by our words and our actions, Alleluia! Christ is risen. May your 50 days of Easter be filled with joy in the God of all life.