Happy Easter! Alleluia, rejoice! Jesus is Risen!
It has been so sweet, hearing John reciting the Easter story, trying to wrap his 3 and a half year old brain around mysteries that the wisest believers struggle to comprehend – Jesus died on the cross and rose, out of love for a broken humanity, so that we could once again live forever with God is perfect happiness and love. We have been talking about it all week and have spent a lot of time at church as well. My awareness has been raised because of all the talk. John will randomly come up to me, eyes wide and serious, “Mommy, Jesus died on the cross and there were dark clouds.” or “Mommy, Jesus isn’t dead anymore. He’s alive and we get to go to heaven!” It’s incredible, this little child professing such deep theological truths. Even though he doesn’t really know what he is saying, really, when I think about it, neither do I.
I don’t really understand what this all means. Jesus died. He was dead. That, for any human, is a final event. There aren’t any outs, substitutions or alternatives. But Jesus isn’t just any human, as we all know. Jesus was also totally, completely and definitively God. How you may ask? Yes, another mystery. So in case you haven’t figured it out yet, there’s a whole lot of mystery going on when it comes to the death and resurrection of Jesus.
But he rose. We know he rose. There wouldn’t be any Christianity if Jesus didn’t rise. If Jesus just died, then he would be remembered as a holy man, a wise sage, an inspiring preacher. But certainly not someone worth dying brutal deaths for – certainly not God. Jesus, a dead man, rose from the dead. He conquered death, the ultimate reality of our existence. It’s beyond understanding.
Our God is so good. He understands that these mysteries are quite beyond any of our comprehension. In His wisdom and in our forefather’s attention to the workings of the Holy Spirit, we are able to realize that the Resurrection of Jesus does not need to be a purely historical event.
Everyday, we experience moments of resurrection. Some moments are huge, like when just the other day, Ben returned home from a deployment. The joy and the love that our family experienced at his homecoming was the fulfillment of all the moments of crucifixion (pain, sorrow, struggle, etc.) that we experienced when he was away. As a family, we experienced rebirth in our reunion.
Moments of resurrection don’t need to be big. We have been talking with John about how he is a big brother and big brothers help to take care of their siblings. Just yesterday, I asked John to get his milk out of the refrigerator for dinner. He did and got Rosie her’s as well. He brought it to the table and told her, “Don’t worry Rosie, I got your milk for dinner.” It was a beautiful moment – a moment of resurrection. One of love, selflessness and responsibility. For me, as a mom, this was fantastic, a moment of resurrection! I was so proud of John and his awareness of not only his sister’s needs, but mine as well.
Moments of resurrection can and do happen every day. We experience them, or miss them, depending on how we choose to perceive them.