Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter!

I was having a discussion with a Jewish sister of mine who was celebrating Passover during this same time frame. It's always so interesting discussing where two different faiths are coming from. Understanding the Judaic roots of Christianity, and understanding that Christ was also celebrating Passover 2,00 years ago, I then proceeded to think about where I would be attending church on Sunday, being a new transplant to Houston. 
Resurrection, the idea of renewal, of a new start, of something fresh, is a powerful concept. I'd say it's been a difficult month for me, personally. I've been knocked around quite a bit, been depressed, upset, angry. Frustrated with life, and wanting little more than a chance to get the month over with and restart. Who doesn't want a redo once in a while?

So I find it great, in a way, that my reset is starting in April, on the occasion of Easter. Once upon a time I also attended Jewish services on Fridays, so the idea of Passover and Easter interact dynamically for me. On the one hand, from the Biblical origin, you have the reminder that you were "once a bondsman", or slave. I think we all experience times in our life where we feel we're victimized and made slave to something else, circumstances that really push us down and beat us up, where we feel as if our lives are not under control. But we're able to celebrate the fact that those times pass on, that our lives go on, that the better times are here, that we've endured the trial and have come out changed, but hopefully better, and no longer victim to forces beyond our control.

And in Easter we have the continuation of that idea. Not only have we emerged, but we have been reborn. When Christ died and rose, he defeated death and sin. The consequences for what we do always have lingering effects, and the circumstances we endure always leave scars (Jesus still had the wounds in his hands after he rose), but we are renewed. Every trying time and circumstance is not only a time to be spared, but in the aftermath to be reborn, to emerge from our mistakes, from our trial, a new person.

So beyond the deep and intimate spiritual relationship I value in Christ, the concepts of entering trying times, being spared and emerging a renewed individual are all concepts I'm treasuring today. While on display most powerfully now, at Easter, they're also ideas I can carry with me day to day, month to month and year to year, throughout my entire life.

I'm attending an African American church called Wheeler Baptist today. I like their worship services, they get down. Whether you're a faithful follower celebrating Easter or an atheist just enjoying your day, be well, take care, and keep fighting for the positive and humane treatment of all people in this world. We all should fight for a place where we can live in peace and happiness not only for ourselves, but everyone else as well.

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