Finding Faith: After Easter, Jesus active through us
"Easter is not the end of the story! Quite frankly, it’s the beginning. Because it is through our daily interactions with others, the work we do to heal this beautiful and endangered planet and the welcoming of all living species into the Body of Christ, that the resurrection and its renewal is fulfilled."
Our Easter services at our favorite places of worship are over. We have had bountiful meals surrounded by our loved ones. We’ve been delighted by the joy of our little ones hunting down colorful, plastic Easter eggs filled with treats. And some of us lucky ones maybe even sneaked in a little Easter Sunday afternoon nap if we were lucky!
But now what? … No, seriously, now what?
We’ve lived through the soul-numbing lows and the ecstatic jubilation of the highs of Holy Week. And we are overjoyed now that Jesus is risen again!
But now what?
Many will be tempted to return to the old grind of work, raising children, doing the chores and paying the bills. Rinse, wash, repeat. After all, our daily lives are filled with much work and worry already.
But the true importance of Easter and Jesus’ resurrection is about making things new again. It’s about renewal. In this post-Easter season it’s even more important that we not forget Jesus’ call.
Yes, Jesus has risen, and he’s now in the Kingdom of Heaven, but we forget that our great commission is that we become Jesus’ hands and feet right here on earth. Because, if not, then what good was Easter anyway? What good is the renewal that Jesus Christ brings if our hearts aren’t changed and we aren’t motivated to pitch in to shine God’s glory into the world?
Many followers think of Easter as the final chapter in a story that begins with Jesus’ birth in the manger. And after the Easter meal, they close the cover, not to drag this book out again for another year.
But that is missing the point! The point of Easter and Jesus’ resurrection is that he is risen and alive and active right here in this earthly kingdom. And he is active through us!
After gathering his disciples after his resurrection, he tells them in Matthew 28:19-20: “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
In other words, “Yes, my faithful followers, I am with you and always will be. But, it is up to you to go spread the news about God, myself and the Holy Spirit.”
Easter is not the end of the story! Quite frankly, it’s the beginning. Because it is through our daily interactions with others, the work we do to heal this beautiful and endangered planet and the welcoming of all living species into the Body of Christ, that the resurrection and its renewal is fulfilled. Amen.
Devlyn Brooks, who works for Modulist, a Forum Communications Co.-owned company, is an ordained pastor in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America. He serves as pastor of Faith Lutheran Church in Wolverton, Minnesota. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org for comments and story ideas.