Why do you look for the living
among the dead”
Dear Easter Minded Christians:
I addressed this April pastor’s pondering to those who are “Easter Minded.” I hope and pray that you consider yourself one of this type people. For those who do not have that faith, a cemetery is a sad and lonely place of death that separates us from the ones we love. Just imagine the misery those women felt at Jesus’ death. Before the sunset on Friday, the time that marked the beginning of Sabbath, the women gathered in that cemetery watching Simon of Arimathea wrap the lifeless body of Jesus and lay him in the grave. That cemetery was a place of death for them. Jesus’ body was sealed away buried. They were not “Easter Minded,” people, they cried because of the darkness of despair.
So, when the Sabbath was finally over that Sunday morning, those same women went to the grave to be with the dead. That is all they knew and expected. Yet they did not find death, but life. St. Luke tells us that those women were visited by two angelic men who stood beside them asking, “Why do you look for the living among the dead?” They explained that Jesus is not dead, he has risen. The grave was empty. It was no longer a place of death, but of new life.
In that moment, they became “Easter Minded” people. They witnessed a resurrection of life that overcomes death. They now knew the joy of the promise and assurance that through death we are joined with God through the resurrection of Jesus our Lord. They went from that cemetery not in grief or anguish, but rejoicing knowing that through death we are given life in God’s kingdom.
This Holy Week, may you walk with those women and hear the story once again rejoicing as “Easter Minded” Christians. May you walk with Christ on Palm Sunday, eat at the last supper on Thursday, cry at the darkness of Friday, and hope in the words of the Vigil of Saturday to rejoice with the women at the celebration of life that comes through the grave at Easter. May we give thanks for this eternal promise and hope in and through Jesus.
In the peace and grace of God,
Pastor Kirk Griffin