Today is a day of waiting . . . waiting for our Risen Christ. Waiting for a new season of hope. We are an Easter people, and tomorrow is a grand celebration. May you all have a holy and blessed Easter.
Todays Gospel (Luke 24:1-12) shows even those closest to Christ still had some doubt:
At daybreak on the first day of the week the women who had come from Galilee with Jesus took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb; but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were puzzling over this, behold, two men in dazzling garments appeared to them. They were terrified and bowed their faces to the ground. They said to them, “Why do you seek the living one among the dead? He is not here, but he has been raised. Remember what he said to you while he was still in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be handed over to sinners and be crucified, and rise on the third day.” And they remembered his words. Then they returned from the tomb and announced all these things to the eleven and to all the others. The women were Mary Magdalene, Joanna, and Mary the mother of James; the others who accompanied them also told this to the apostles, but their story seemed like nonsense and they did not believe them. But Peter got up and ran to the tomb, bent down, and saw the burial cloths alone; then he went home amazed at what had happened.
In Anne a lay apostle's book Serving in Clarity, she suggests we must seek to understand:
"With obedience comes humility and with humility comes obedience. You might say one feeds the other. Again, this does not mean we cannot question decisions or requests. It is normal to seek clarity when we do not understand. But we must do so respectfully, mindful of the presence of God in others and careful not to influence others to doubt. Those who challenge in arrogance know what I am saying and those whose spirit is false and duplicitous are known to God. How often the enemy speaks with pretend innocence and with no intention of accepting God’s clarity. How often the enemy sets up a holy man for ambush. The enemy thinks he is very clever indeed but God reads souls, my friends. He knows what is in our hearts. Now, if we are quite certain that a given human authority claiming to represent the Church has it wrong, clearly we have a dilemma and because we are dealing with humanity this can happen. In such times we must be very prayerful, saying, “Jesus, surely You are aware that You have a problem here.” We must speak our conscience honestly, respectfully and privately to the authority in question and then leave the Lord to get on with His job, continuing on our walk to personal holiness via the path of obedience. Spiritual direction in these situations is invaluable."
Lay apostles, think about the apostles and followers of Jesus today and what they must have been experiencing finding the tomb empty. Celebrate tomorrow as they did when Jesus appeared to them.
Thank you, Lord, for giving me hope and faith. Tomorrow will truly be a celebration!