We Have Risen! We Have Risen Indeed!

To read today’s Gospel passage, click on
http://bible.oremus.org/?ql=200846939

THE LORD IS RISEN!

THE LORD IS RISEN INDEED!

“The Resurrection of Christ”
Vyssi Brod Hohenfurth, c. 1350

Christ, the Lord, is risen today, Alleluia!
Sons of men and angels say, Alleluia!
Raise your joys and triumphs high, Alleluia!
Sing, ye heavens, and earth, reply, Alleluia!

Love’s redeeming work is done, Alleluia!
Fought the fight, the battle won, Alleluia!
Lo! the Sun’s eclipse is over, Alleluia!
Lo! He sets in blood no more, Alleluia!

Vain the stone, the watch, the seal, Alleluia!
Christ hath burst the gates of hell, Alleluia!
Death in vain forbids His rise, Alleluia!
Christ hath opened paradise, Alleluia!

Lives again our glorious King, Alleluia!
Where, O death, is now thy sting? Alleluia!
Once He died our souls to save, Alleluia!
Where thy victory, O grave? Alleluia!

Soar we now where Christ hath led, Alleluia!  Following our exalted Head, Alleluia!
Made like Him, like Him we rise, Alleluia!  Ours the cross, the grave, the skies, Alleluia!

Hail, the Lord of earth and Heaven, Alleluia!  Praise to Thee by both be given, Alleluia!
Thee we greet triumphant now, Alleluia!  Hail, the resurrection, thou, Alleluia!

King of glory, Soul of bliss, Alleluia!  Everlasting life is this, Alleluia!
Thee to know, Thy power to prove, Alleluia!  Thus to sing and thus to love, Alleluia!

(Charles Wesley, 1739)

The day has arrived!  After all this time of anunciation and birth, of baptism and ministry, of teaching and healing, of calling and response, of temptation and darkness, of dying and crucifixion, this Day of Resurrection has dawned.  Christ has risen!  Christ has risen indeed!

But lest we lapse into thinking of this day as a commemoration of The Resurrection of Christ, as a mere remembrance of what happened on that third day so long ago, we need to realize that this day is not just about Jesus’ Resurrection; it is also about our own.  We who carried our cross, we who died to self, are this day given new life.  God has recreated us into who God calls us to be.  And, in a way, that is almost more scary than the dying.  There is no going back.  The self that we knew before is no more.  We are a new creation.  We have risen!  We have risen indeed!

You see, Jesus did not die and magically come back to life.  God did not undo what had been done.  There was still a bloody cross standing on an unknown hill called Golgotha.  Rather, God created something new–a new way of seeing and a new way of being.  Do you remember the first time God did that?

In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth,the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while a wind from God swept over the face of the waters. Then God said, ‘Let there be light’; and there was light. And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day. (Genesis 1: 1-5)

From the void, from the darkness, God created Light and Life.  Truthfully, if you look at it from a literal view, nothing has really changed.  Jesus, sadly, is still dead.  But through eyes that have been resurrected, nothing will ever be the same again.  Maybe resurrection comes not in raising one above life, but in raising life to where it is supposed to be.  Jesus was the first to cross that threshold between–between death and life, between the world and the sacred, between seeing with the eyes of the world and seeing with the eyes of the Divine.  Resurrection is not about being transplanted to a new world but rather being called to live in this one with a new way of seeing.  It means being recreated into the one that God envisions you to be.  It means being given a new way of seeing where love is stronger than death, where hope abides, and where life has no end.  It means being capable of glimpsing the Holy and the Sacred, the promise of Life, even in this life, even now.  This day of Easter is now only about Jesus’ Resurrection; it is about ours!  So, what do you plan to do with your new life?

The end of all our exploring…will be to arrive where we started…and know the place for the first time. (T.S. Eliot)

King of glory, Soul of bliss, Alleluia! Everlasting life is this, Alleluia!
Thee to know, Thy power to prove, Alleluia! Thus to sing and thus to love, Alleluia!

Everlasting life is truly this!

Grace and Peace,

Shelli

Thank you for joining with me on this Lenten journey!  I have been so blessed by all the comments and the reflections that you have shared.  We will do this again.  In the meantime, I’m going to take a little “blogging sabbatical” and return on April 25th with posts two or three times a week.  I will do the “every day” thing again later!  Let me know if you or others that you know want to join the Google group and get emails each time I post.  And comment!  Let’s start a discussion!   You can email me at swilliams@stpaulshouston.org.  Let me hear from you! 

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