“He has risen!” (Mark 16:1-8)
Dead and rotting. Alive and powerful! The images couldn’t be more different, more disparate. One is filled with the darkness of nothingness, the stench of decay, the sorrow of loss. The other has the light of being, the aroma of new humanity, the joy of living loving and sharing. One exposes ultimate weakness, the other perfecting newness.
Maybe we don’t draw this contrast deeply enough. Too many glorious Easter church services, too many Easter cards, too many happy-looking Easter bunnies and yummy-fied Easter eggs. We can’t feel and can barely imagine the utter dryness and complete negation of the tomb.
We are worlds (almost literally) away from the first women on that first Easter morning. Jesus’ mum, Mary Magdalene and another woman named Salome set off expecting to find sad traces of a love forever vanquished only to be witnesses to undying love and incorruptible life as never before. “He has risen!” rings very differently in modern capitalist 21st century than it did in the feudal-agrarian first.
Jesus has risen.
Jesus has risen from the dead.
Jesus has risen from the dead against the odds.
Jesus has risen from the dead against the odds and against every evil in the universe.
Jesus has risen from the dead against the odds and against every evil in the universe so the universe is given a new birth.
Jesus has risen from the dead against the odds and against every evil in the universe so the universe is given a new birth and we are re-birthed too when we accept this newness He has to offer.
1. Think hard: What surprises you most about Easter? What do you think should surprise all of us?
2. What analogies or stories can you use to communicate the surprise and awe of that first Easter morning?
~ meditation by Alwyn