It is an odd feeling when something is over. I am all done reading my Lent meditation (for the second time) and I have finished reading Barbara Kingsolver’s book, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle. I am now free to resume reading murder mysteries for leisure but I still crave something more thoughtful to read. I didn’t feel that I was giving up murder mysteries for Lent to punish myself. Instead, I chose to read something thought provoking for the days during Lent. I actually look forward to Lent as it nears. I like the quiet contemplative time.
Now that Lent is over, Holy Week is over and Easter has been celebrated there is an empty place where there had been anticipation. This place will soon be filled with planting and weeding but for the moment I still feel a little lost. I shouldn’t feel lost at all after having just celebrated Easter. The resurrection of Jesus is fascinating but I would be lying if I said I had no doubts about it. There are mysteries in the world beyond my understanding and the resurrection is one of them. But, that doesn’t mean my mind doesn’t try to make sense of it. Like, maybe Jesus had some voodoo zombie drugs and then some guys rolled the rock away and let him out of the tomb. That is my maybe-he-wasn’t-really-dead doubt. If I didn’t have doubts I wouldn’t be a thinking person. I want to believe, so I believe with just a little bit of doubt and wonder about what actually happened.
I could spend all my time doubting, wondering and analyzing the texts trying to figure out what really happened. That would be to miss the point. Instead of trying to figure out HOW the resurrection happened I should focus on what it means that it happened. What does it mean that Jesus came back? What did he tell us when he came back? What can I learn from these stories to make me a better person right now?
I remember for one of my eastern religion classes my plan was to write a paper about how reincarnation happens. I wanted to find out about the moments between one life and the next. What happens? How does it happen? In researching this I discovered that I was asking the wrong questions. I will never know exactly how it happens (if it does happen) because it is beyond my human understanding. The better questions are about what it means about how I live my life right now.
The resurrection is also beyond my human understanding. It doesn’t fit into a nice neat scientific category. But, then, science isn’t nice and neat and there will always be more questions than answers. Faith is different, although mine doesn’t fit into any nice neat category. When Jesus encountered His disciples after the resurrection He said, “Peace be with you.” What if my new approach is one that before all else wishes peace upon all others? The new part of this approach is: ALL others (not just MOST).
Peace Be With You