Monday, April 6, 2015

I'm Just Like Them

Today is the day after Easter and I am wondering, how has Easter changed me? It’s not enough to get dressed up and go to church and share dinner with the family. If Easter, which is the most important holiday on the Christian calendar, doesn’t change me, make me different, better, than I’ve missed the point.

 As I ponder the events of last week, I think about how I recognized myself in the disciples
throughout the Easter week narrative. I see myself in the disciples who fell asleep in the garden while Jesus was praying. I want to be awake with Christ, joining him in his work, but too often I find myself falling asleep in my discipleship. I see myself in Peter denying Christ even after he swore he wouldn’t because when push came to shove, fear won over his devotion to Jesus. Stepping out in faith, even just to share my faith story sometimes, can be scary and too often I give up the opportunity to share about Jesus because it seems safer not too. I see myself in the disciples hiding together behind locked doors in the upper room—I have little contact outside my own little faith community.

Thank God the disciples were ordinary human beings like me because just as I see myself in them, I also see how Jesus responds to them and likewise me. Jesus woke the disciples once but then let them sleep until the appointed time had come. Jesus knew Peter would deny him and told Peter so. After his resurrection, he doesn’t reprimand Peter but gave the opportunity to say he loved Jesus, once for every time he had denied Jesus. He came to the disciples in the upper room even though the doors were locked, not reprimanding them, but to give them his peace and the promise of the Holy Spirit.

How did Easter change me? It helped me to see that I’m just like the people whom Jesus shared his earthly life with. The same people he laughed with, cried with, protected and loved. The same people he worked with and through to change the world in the 1st century. I’m just like them and his relationship with me is no different than the relationships he had with them.

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