From The Rectory
As I sit down to write this month’s editorial, we have just enjoyed a weekend of warmth and sunshine. It may only have been two days so far, but it feels as though winter may finally have ended and that spring is here!
Life is full of seasons; we are accustomed to the seasons of the year passing, spring to summer, autumn to winter one to the next. In our own lives we experience different seasons, the darkness of winter, the hope of spring and the joys of summer.
As I reflect upon the Easter narrative, it occurs to me how it represents the different seasons of life we may find ourselves in.
On the Thursday we witness Jesus in great anguish in the Garden of Gethsemane, as he wrestled with his father and the situation he found himself in.
In our own lives we may find ourselves in those dark moments, desperately crying out to God, unable to see the way forward. In this narrative, Jesus does not get the answer he was seeking, but God gives him the strength he needs to face the situation, so that he is able to utter those famous words ‘not my will but yours’.
The Easter narrative also provides a greater darkness, the depths of winter, Good Friday, where all hope seems lost, the joy and warmth of summer paling into the distance. After the crucifixion the disciples hid away in the upper room, lost and confused, as it appeared their journey had come to an abrupt end!
There are many issues in life that will cause those Good Friday moments, times when nothing seems to make sense, when all we want to do is hide away. But to quote Tony Campalo, an American pastor and sociologist, ‘It may be Friday but Sunday is coming’
We don’t jump straight from Good Friday and the crucifixion to the euphoria of Easter Sunday and the Resurrection, in between is Easter Saturday.
Easter Saturday becomes symbolic of life as usual. There is nothing about Easter Saturday to drain our energy and emotions, but it’s not a high point either, it’s still a time of waiting.
Whatever season of life we find ourselves we should take comfort that it is just a season. We should take comfort from the words that Moses spoke to Joshua, as he handed over leadership of the nation to him:
‘The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.’ (Deut 31v8)
God still speaks this promise over us today, we do not need to be afraid or discouraged because our Lord goes before us preparing the way and yet also walks with us, guiding us and giving us the strength and peace to continue.
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