Monday, April 5, 2010

Easter Ramblings

He is risen. He is risen, indeed.

The echo closes emphatically. Indeed! Yes! Amen! That's all, folks! Hallelujah!

But it is not over, not yet. The earth--still curse-scarred, sun-burnt, and carbon-addicted-- groans. Our bodies--cancer-filled, cellulite-covered, and balding--ache. Our souls--empty, idolatrous, and vain--languish (Romans 8).

Indeed, death has lost its sting (1 Cor. 15). Yes! Amen! That's all, folks! Hallelujah! But theological proposition is a matter of perception. Some do not share this perception. Some funeral services are snake bites. Venomous. Moribund. Indeed.

"We will miss her!"
"I can't live without him!"
"She was too young!"
"It should have been me."
"My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?"

This last phrase, of course, we know from the Cross of Jesus Christ. Death stung him. It was merciless. Poisonous. Lonesome. Indeed.

Indeed, it is appointed for each man to die once and then face Judgment (Hebrews 9:27).

We die, that much is certain; and everyone we have ever loved and cared about will die, too, sometimes--heartbreakingly--before us. Being someone else, traveling the world, making new friends gives us a temporary reprieve from this knowledge, which is spared most of hte animal kingdom. Busyness numbs the pain of this awareness, but it can never totally submerge it. Given that days are limited, our hours precious, we have to decide what we want to do, what we want to say, what an who we care about, and how we want to allocate our time to these things within the limits that do not and cannot change. In short, we need to slow down (Foreman, The Tyranny of Email; 191).

Slow down, yes, but, death will still catch up (see Final Destination series). Death is a fact. Resurrection is a fact. Indeed is a term of perception. How you say it reflects whether or not you know (and are known by) the risen Jesus.