Sunday, 21 April 2019

Easter Day: Gill Roberts

I don’t really do happy. 

The sort of films I take my friends to see are ‘Schindler’s List’ and ‘Shadowlands’ – serious, sober stuff!

I quite often find Easter Day disappointing – even depressing.
I can wake up and can’t help but sing,

Jesus Christ is risen today, Alleluia!
our triumphant holy day,
who did once upon the cross
suffer to redeem our loss. Alleluia!
Hymns of praise then let us sing Alleluia!
unto Christ our heavenly King!
who endured the cross and grave!
sinners to redeem and save. Alleluia!
It is glorious, that first moment of realisation of resurrection!  I’m thrilled.

I can start the day thrilled with the knowledge of the resurrection, go to church for breakfast and communion but somehow it can fail to capture the atmosphere of the Day and it deteriorates.  There is an anti-climax.  In fact, just the opposite of the way things were for the followers of Jesus on the first Easter Day.  Easter Day didn’t start off being happy for them, did it?

They must have spent the Sabbath in an agony of horror, anxiety about whether they too would end up on crosses.  Their Lord had gone.  The One who was to have saved the world was no longer with them.  They were leaderless, rudderless.  What would happen now?  The women couldn’t stop crying.  Things didn’t improve.  There was nothing they could do on the Sabbath.  It was a woman who started off the activity on Sunday and for her it was
·       the shock of the empty tomb.  The horror of someone having stolen the Lord’s body.
For the men the result was that Mary seemed to have lost the plot – thought she’d ‘seen the Lord’.

Then John & Peter, checking it out, to their utter disbelief found it exactly as she said – though John had an inkling of what might have happened.  But how could it have happened?  Even though they remembered He’d said something about ‘the third day’.
An emergency meeting of disciples was called – and HE comes!  “PEACE”, He says!  How can they have peace?!  He’s there – but He’s not as He was.  Their thoughts were in turmoil because things have changed.  After three fantastic years of following Him, going where He went, hearing what He said, taking it all in – now it seemed they were to go it alone.  How could He be with them always?

Meanwhile the Emmaus couple meet a stranger, eat with Him and discover Him to be ‘the Lord’.  With burning hearts they can’t help but run the whole way back to the upper room to discover He’s been there too – and that Thomas has had his own special meeting.
What a day!  Fears, doubts, strange happenings, questions, no real answers, yet excitement, anticipation.  What does the future hold?

“Blessed are those who have not seen but believe.”

“This really is ‘counter-culture’ – that the most reliable foundation for a human life is something we cannot see, or touch, or prove.  How amazing is that!” (Richard Kidd on BURG retreat)
But the pains which he endured, Alleluia!
our salvation have procured!

now above the sky he's King!

where the angels ever sing. Alleluia!

1 comment:

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