The Rector's Column

by The Rev. Dr. Jason Parkin, Rector

     Tomb, thou shalt hold him no longer;
     Death is strong, but Life is stronger.
     Stronger than the dark, the light;
     Stronger that the wrong, the right.
     Faith and hope triumphant say
     Christ is ris'n on Easter Day.
                              Bishop Phillips Brooks (1835 - 1893)

As far as the disciples knew, Jesus had died for good on that awful Friday afternoon. As far as they knew, he was gone: no fooling, no nonsense gone. As far as they knew, the forces of evil and envy and fear and cruelty had taken Jesus and had executed him and then shut him in a tomb. It all seemed so final, so definite.

But God would not allow it. God would not allow those forces to have the final say. And in a burst of light like the first sunrise over Creation, when God pushed back the darkness and said, "Let there be light," God summoned Jesus out of the grave, out of the arms of chaos, out of the earth, and thus began a new Creation.

We cannot prove the Resurrection took place. No one can. But, if you are like me, you have seen evidence of the Resurrection in many ways and in many people. I have seen it in the lives of people who have found peace in a world that so often rejects peace, who have found meaning in the midst of circumstances and situations that tried to destroy all meaning. We did not witness the Resurrection; but we have all witnessed the Resurrected Christ in those who have overcome fear and sorrow, addiction and anguish because of their experience of the mercy and grace and love of God. I suspect we all know people who no longer fear the past nor the future nor death itself because they have discovered in the Resurrection that death is not the final word, that there is joy and hope and love and life possible for all in Christ Jesus.

It is our vocation, as people made new by the wonder and mystery of the Resurrection, to carry the Risen Christ into the world. It is our calling to live lives that reflect and manifest the truth that in Christ God has made all things new. It is our privilege to show forth the Risen One in our homes, our workplaces, our relationships, our families, this community and the larger world. May the One who rose rise within us.