Easter Is All About Rekindling Enthusiasm!
“Say, ‘his disciples came by night and stole him.’ ”
The religious authorities didn’t know what to make of Jesus’ disappearance, and wanted to squelch any rumors at the outset. So they came up with a tale about theft. People would buy it, they thought.
And people did buy it. The story was still circulating when Matthew’s Gospel reached its final edit, several decades later. A deep gulf had been dredged between people who passionately believed in the resurrection of Jesus and others who emphatically did not. Our world today is both similar to that world and different from it. The gulf is present, but seldom mentioned. There is little evidence of passionate belief.
Why does the somber season of Lent come so naturally, while the joyous season of Easter seems so challenging? By way of an answer, how often do we think of Easter, once the feast itself has passed?
In some cultures, people used to (and may still do) greet one another during the Easter season with these words:
“Christ has risen!”
“He has risen indeed!”
This beautiful greeting was a reminder of the great mystery they had just celebrated. We can carry these words in our hearts and, after greeting others in our usual way, repeat them in the depths of our soul. May they echo within us throughout the day! In remembering and reflecting on the overwhelming love that God has shown us through Jesus’ death and resurrection, we can become—as Saint Augustine expressed it—alleluias from head to foot.
Christ has risen—he has risen indeed!
Lord Jesus, I believe! But rekindle my enthusiasm. Don’t let the skepticism of our secular culture cloud my belief or dampen my joy. You are the Faithful One, living and true. You are the Way, the Truth, and the Life. You are the Resurrection and the Life. You are the Savior of the world. Increase my Easter joy. Let the overwhelming reality of your resurrection illumine my path, guiding me through the obscurity of earthly life to the brightness of eternity.
I want to really live this Easter season!
Daughters of Saint Paul. (2011). Easter Grace: Daily Gospel Reflections. (M. G. Dateno & M. L. Trouvé, Eds.) (pp. 8–9). Boston, MA: Pauline Books & Media.