Easter is an event in the life of God and the world after which nothing was the same again. Nothing could be. In Jesus’ rising, death was unseated as the end of existence, as the owner of the last word, and as the hardest wall of absolute certainty.
The empty tomb bears witness to a new truth. Now we live in a different world with different rules. Now we stand up. No longer bound by the limited laws dictated by death, we can live according to the terms of resurrection. We speak and sing and see the world with the language and lenses of this deep and destabilizing power that God has revealed in the risen Jesus.
This takes some getting used to, friends.
We need to practice. It’s why we celebrate Easter every year, and why we take fifty days— 7 Sundays—to do it. We gather Sunday after Sunday to share the news and tell the stories of the ordinary people and extraordinary power that continue to flow from the morning of Jesus’ rising.
When we say “Christ is risen!” we don’t mean again. We mean still. And this is a claim and a cry we offer a hurting and exhausted world. Christ is risen still.
Easter dawns still shrouded in the smoke of war. Easter dawns this year on a planet that is still warming and on people who feel unable to slow or stop this creeping catastrophe. It dawns on plants and animals who will enter extinction this year because of human indifference and greed. It dawns on neighbors and neighborhoods who languish beneath and within structures shaped by cruelty and sustained by racism.
The feast of Easter calls us to embrace and revel in the reality of resurrection–even as we deal daily with the real and ongoing forces of death at work in our world and in our lives. These are the terms of Resurrection.