It’s been a while since my last entry. We’ve hit a stretch of busy-ness during the Lenton season culminating in a wonderful Easter service last Sunday morning. The next thing you know, it’s been a month. As per every Easter, we had fewer empty pews and even as I get excited about that I also wonder why it can’t be that way every week. We worship on Sunday because of the Resurrection, and in a sense every Sunday is Easter. There is no answer to this, and there will be the usual fall off afterwards. Still, the message rings true and it is up to each one of us to respond. The words “He is not here, he is risen!” resonate through the centuries and are as powerful today as they were in the 1st century.
I came across a prayer by St. Francis of Assisi (1182-1226) that is a good way to begin the other side of Easter:
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy;
O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
George Matheson, the well-known blind preacher of Scotland, once said,”My dear God, I have never thanked You for my thorns. I have thanked you a thousand times for my roses but not once for my thorns. I have always looked forward to the place where I will be rewarded for my cross, but I have never thought of my cross as a present glory itself” (Streams in the Desert, 147).