Yesterday was Easter. In case you didn’t know, or missed it, because you have been living under a rock. For some, Easter is just a day for kids to be overstimulated on sugar, white and pink rabbits and marshmallow peeps, but for many of us, Easter means a heck of a lot more. Easter means CHRIST IS RISEN. Yesterday meant the beginning of a new life, the initiation into a new existence as a result of the one who was willing to die on behalf of sinful humanity. This Christ, one of the Triune God, overcame the impossibility of death, proving that he was not just human, but also God.
I titled my post, “Christ is Risen, Now What?” for a number of reasons. Not just because Easter has come and gone, but because Easter marks a significant moment in the lives of many. Already, I have seen many a Facebook status saying, “Well, already my day is better because I could have _______.” [Insert Lenten fast object/item/food here] If this is all Lent means to us as Christians or secular humans – 40 days of extracting coffee, chocolate, beer, or what have you – a Facebook status celebrating its reentry after the appropriate period of time, then who are we? Are we just 40 day Christians? To be blunt, we are just Lent and Easter Christians, and that isn’t right. That isn’t fair and true to the one who was willing to make the ultimate sacrifice on the cross for our minute and temporary (40 day, excluding the 6 Sundays where WE CAN consume our lenten object/item) sacrifice. This sounds harsh and blunt, and frankly, it is. But I’m willing to make such a claim because to preach the Gospel or Good News of Christ on Easter and then go back to drinking coffee 12 hours later is hypocritical. We need to be better – we need to remember the sacrifice of Christ, and to live into the new creation Christ initiates us into each and every day – not just once a year, but EACH AND EVERY DAY.
Now, now, don’t think that I’m all holier than thou and trying to condemn y’all. Because I’m not! I’m no better! I will likely go back to occasionally purchasing my favorite makeup items, and over time, it will get less restrained. But understand that the Gospel message Christ preached was not one without strings attached; it was not one without a full commitment. Christ demanded that we give up everything and follow Him, and we are still expected to follow that. Not literally, of course – we are not expected to give up our homes, jobs, money and families to follow Christ. But we are supposed to live into the Easter miracle of resurrection – that is new life – and give up those things that inhibit us as Christians from fully focusing on what it is that is the Christian existence. We are also supposed to continue to live into the sacrifice – not woefully or with obvious complaint (i.e. public Facebook statuses griping about how difficult it is to be a Christian during Lent, how difficult it is to give up X or Y…), but with joy, thanksgiving and supplication. Faith is not an easy journey, but it is a worthy journey. But it is not one where we can lay down the cross Christ picked up out of sheer inconvenience.
Now what for the blog? Well, the blog will definitely continue, but not every day. I’m starting into the final push of my M.Div., and with that comes an insane number of papers, exams and also my Final Review for Ordination. A lot of lasts. But also a lot of firsts as well. My nursery school had this song, written by Joe Raposo, the man who wrote the songs for Sesame Street (he coincidentally lived in the town where I grew up):
“This is the ending of the beginning, Oh what a good place, for us to start.”
I think that’s very fitting, both for this post, and for the direction of this blog as well. Faith does not necessarily begin at Easter (although for some it might), but perhaps it is refreshed and made anew. But more importantly, our lives with God, as reconciled through Christ should not dwindle down to the niceties after Easter Sunday ends, as Christ’s sacrifice on our behalf was far too significant and transformative. Now, as for my blog, I certainly won’t be writing every day, as my Lenten challenge of sorts is over, but I won’t be putting the blog away entirely either. I have enjoyed sharing my life, my journey, and what’s what in the church with the world. So stay tuned, keep your ears to the ground, and SUBSCRIIIBEEEE!