Consider the range of emotions that the disciples of Jesus moved through over the days of his final suffering and his crucifixion and resurrection. Such extremes of feeling cannot be imagined or pondered with disinterest. They must be experienced.
And experience is the key to understanding the Holy Week–Easter event since Christian Faith is not primarily an historical religion.
Yes, Christianity did begin with a real historical event: God became human in Jesus (the Incarnation). In Jesus God lived and breathed, he walked and worked. He loved and was loved. He was hated and he suffered. Jesus was put to death as a criminal.
These were all actual historical events.
But with the Easter event in which God raises Jesus from death we celebrate Jesus Christ as a living and present event. Jesus is for us today a real and living presence able to be experienced and verified in our own experience today.
What does this mean, to speak of Jesus as living and present, a contemporary experience?
In our own lives we have experienced death. We have also experienced life.
There are days when we feel like death and we cannot see the way ahead. Anxiety and depression threaten to overwhelm us. The nights can be long. We lie awake in interminable darkness. This feels like death and our darkness entombs us.
And then, at last, comes dawn.
Now that we are celebrating Easter the church gives us eight Easter Sundays in a row, the Octave of Easter.
I’m happy that we have this Easter Octave since I need all the help I can get to digest the impact of the resurrection of Jesus in my life today.
So these daily FFF reflection will continue fo this Easter week, concluding next Sunday.
You might like to join me in making this Easter week a form of “retreat in daily life” taking time for prayer, perhaps ten minutes two or three times each day of this week.
I know that Jesus, risen and present, will not miss the opportunity to work miracles for those who seek Him in this week.
Tabernacle Doors from Cathedral of Blessed Sacrament, Christchurch