Saturday, April 23, 2011

Easter weekend.

From last year:

Easter weekend:
Jesus died.
Death = all things that God is not.
All things that He hates.

Cigarette burns
and knife scars
and being left on the street like trash
from the people who were supposed to take care of them.
beautiful bodies, designed for movement and joy and being held,
bodies being sold,
being used.
Grief, and fear.
Precious girls being raped.

Jesus died.
Jesus came back to life
because death, all that death, could not hold Him.

So, I've gotten frustrated for most years of my Christian life at Easter time.
Christmas makes sense to me (who doesn't like Christmas carols?!)
but I've never been able to work up any sort of emotional response to Easter.

...Jesus came back to life
because He overcame death.

...Yeah. This past week, leading up to Easter? This Saturday Easter vigil,
when we started the night in the church in darkness, with solemn readings,
until we got to the point where they sang it, softly at first, and then we repeated:
Christ is Risen, He is Risen, Christ is Risen, Alleluia...

And the lights turned on and we rang our bells and we sang joyful songs,

because we were marking that:
He had risen from death,
the death had ended,
His power was greater...

I don't really know what to say,
other than that
Easter means so much to me this year.

...Oh Lord, Lord who is greater than death,
You chose to enter and experience our world.
And not just Emily's world, my experience of sunflowers and happiness and friendship.
You willingly put Yourself into a world of cigarette burns and rape and fear and grief.
You experienced it to its fullest.

There is no suffering that was not borne by You,

and so You identify with those who suffer.

And though I am so confused by You, though I want to be mad at You,
though I am so sad and freaking angry the world is not how it should be...

I am so grateful and bewildered that You would ever enter this world,
that You experienced suffering.
When I think now about
what lay upon You on that Cross...
You are greater than death. Than all that death.
And to that we get to say,
and we mean it,

in whatever way we can know how to understand it,
even the tiniest bit.

In my sad and confused and questioning but being-ever-held-by-You little heart,
I do love You, so much. Thank You for knowing that, in Your crazy, knowing-things-I-don't-know-how-to-say way.

(back to this year):
I'm excited for Easter vigil tonight. Come, Lord Jesus.

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Human Needs Global Resources Covenant, 2009

As fellow travelers on this journey, we commit to this covenant before God. Lord, in Your mercy, hear these our prayers:

When confronted with scarcity, need, and inadequacy, may we be nourished by the Bread of Life and the Cup of Salvation. Abundance overflows from Your table, sustaining all who come in faith. Father, help us.

When monotony blurs our vision and dulls our senses, may we encounter others as Christ did, through intentional presence in daily life, submitting as clay to be formed into vessels filled with the Spirit. Christ, guide us.

When wounded by the fractured condition of Your people, may we be united by Your Lordship in faith, hope, and love; seeing, as through the facets of a diamond, the beautiful spectrum of Your light reflected onto Your holy Church joined in praise. Spirit, empower us.

When all Creation groans, afflicted by injustice and driven to despair, may the promise of redemption root us in the hope of Your Kingdom: "Behold, I am making all things new!"

Holy Trinity, send us now into the world in peace, and grant us strength and courage to love and serve You with gladness and singleness of heart.