From a Creighton Student's Perspective
of Creighton University's Online Ministries
April 12th, 2009
Senior – Pre Med majoring in Psychology and Spanish
Rejoice! He is risen! Go eat your chocolate, feast on your desserts, and enjoy whatever you gave up for Lent! However, some aspects of our Lenten journey should stick with us long after today. Today we celebrate the single most important day in the religious calendar. It is one thing for Jesus to suffer and die for our sins as he did on Good Friday, but the way that he truly conquers evil is by rising again. Through this sequence he opens the Gates of Heaven and offers us eternal life and salvation from our sinful ways.
The first reading reminds us that “we are all witnesses of all that [Jesus] did,” which acts as an invitation to remember and actively emulate his life on earth (Acts 10:39). This is not like the Fourth of July, simply a holiday commemorating something that happened once a long time ago. Instead we celebrate Jesus’ sacrifice on Good Friday and his triumph and gift to us on Easter continually.
Personally it is powerful to remember that on a significantly smaller scale, when we bear our own crosses, we experience a pattern a little like Jesus’. In fact, the second reading tells us that we were “raised with Christ”; in a sense reflecting how our own salvation is directly tied to Jesus’ triumph over sin and death (Colossians 3:1). Jesus’ Passion grew worse and worse leading up to his crucifixion. His experience led him through great despair, loneliness, humiliation, and physical pain. Jesus himself, the Son of God, even cries out before his death, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” I may not suffer as Jesus did, but still I feel as though I can relate to the despair. Lately, as a graduating senior, I’ve been facing many crucial decisions about my future. Sometimes the reality of graduating in a month and the weight of my decisions put significant stress on me. The important thing for me to remember is that, like with Jesus, every Good Friday is followed by an Easter Sunday.
What a relief it must have been to have Jesus return to the disciples! The feelings of sorrow, anxiety, and fear that Jesus’ death plunged them into were immense, so to see him back in their presence must have brought them so much comfort. We have an advantage over the disciples, though. We do not have to wait for Jesus to return to be with us. After defeating death, he remains with us, guiding us along the way, and forgiving us after we ignore him. I see our walk as similar to the disciples on the road to Emmaus (one of today’s optional Gospel readings). Jesus was with the disciples throughout the entire journey, but they did not notice until he celebrated Communion with them. Let us be vigilant to not let that happen to us. Starting on this Easter Sunday, let us seek to remember that Jesus’ Resurrection means that he cannot be taken away from us. We can see him all around us along our own journey, not just when we go to celebrate Communion.
Happy Easter, everyone! May your Lenten journey stay with you long after today.
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