Alleluia, He is risen! May the joy of the risen Christ bring peace and joy to your hearts and homes this Easter season!
These three words, “He is risen,” are very familiar and often repeated during the Easter season. As can easily happen when we become familiar with something, we can take it for granted. Familiar words can lose their ability to really impact us and we can begin to say them without really considering what they mean for us.
“He is risen” is the ultimate message of hope. These three words speak to a wonderful mystery — that God has defeated death, that nothing can separate us from the love of God. Pause and let that sink into the depths of your heart — God loves you so much that nothing can keep God away from you!
I am also struck by the use of the present tense in this phrase. The resurrection is not just something that happened in the past or just something that we look forward to in the future, it is the reality of our present day. Every day that we are alive, it is true to say that “He is risen!”
There are many crosses that each of us bear today, both individually and as a society. Whether we are talking about war and violence in Ukraine or in countless places around the world, or the ongoing economic, physical and mental effects of the pandemic, or the social and political divisiveness that creates isolation and despair, there is real suffering in our world today.
But the words, “He is risen,” mean that the hope which the disciples felt 2,000 years ago when they experienced the resurrection and the hope that we have for our own resurrection in the future, is the hope we can lay claim to today and can certainly transform the darkness of today’s world into light.
Friends, each of us has the opportunity this Easter season to bring that hope into the world. I pray that we, as people of the resurrection, may reflect the words “He is risen” in our words, attitudes and actions. May we be beacons of light bringing the hope of a God who loves us to no end into a world struggling through the darkness.
Alleluia, He is risen!