Easter People in the Line – BC Catholic
Recently, when I was making a seasonal home decor purchase, the cashier asked me, “Do you celebrate Easter? Although I was surprised to be asked that, I shouldn’t have been. Not everyone celebrates Easter, but I was proud to be able to answer with a strong yes.
What I didn’t explain, however, is that Easter isn’t just a one-day holiday for me. After six weeks of Lent—examining my conscience and striving to change my heart for the better—I celebrate the risen Savior and the momentous changes this event has brought to everyone. Easter reminds us that Christ enabled our souls to live beyond the grave, and this knowledge affects every day of our lives. It is true that Catholics celebrate a whole Easter season, which lasts fifty days; however, what really makes us Easter people is our daily closeness to God, rooted in hope and the promise of eternal life. Let’s think about what the Easter people look like this side of heaven.
The world is full of sin and division. When we hear about the Passion of Christ, we are confronted with the evils of this world. It was the evil of humanity that created the need for the birth of Jesus; it was evil that caused his crucifixion; it is evil that necessitated the resurrection for our redemption. As a human race, we need to be saved. Evil and sin are not new problems, but they certainly have not diminished in our time.
As Dr. Tim Gray stated in his April 4 Shape message, the moral code in the West is in darkness for many reasons, but a common thread running through it all seems to be estrangement from God. He said, “When people stray from God, what usually happens is they end up in darkness – a moral darkness, a darkness of reality and truth.” People who don’t know God or choose to ignore God try to follow their own rules and standards. They follow their own path rather than seeking the path created for them, and their part in the puzzle of the common good. Living life as if we are in control or as if everything is up to us leads us into darkness when we all yearn for the light.
Christ is that light. In his earthly ministry, he shone in his inclusive treatment of others, tender mercy and healing touch. He shone most clearly in the sacrifice of the crucifixion and his glorious resurrection.
Believing in Christ and his resurrection is the starting point, but to be Easter people, our actions must align with our beliefs. In truly seeking the light, we too must be inclusive and tolerant. We need to show forgiveness and compassion. We are called to help the broken by our attentive ears, our loving embrace and our generous assistance.
It can be difficult to see through the darkness of our world, but the path to salvation has been illuminated for each of us to simply choose to follow. If we believe and continually seek the Light, we will not only act like Jesus did, but we will spread its positive energy to others.
As Dr. Gray said, “No matter how dark the world gets, we can walk in the light of Christ and that should give us joy. This should give us hope. Even in the midst of a dark world, we must be a light. We must reflect the light of Christ.
The joy and hope of this light should not only be in our thoughts on Easter morning. Yes, we sing our hallelujahs and celebrate new life, but the gift of salvation deserves our attention every day.
Easter is our assurance that we have a chance to escape the darkness. So, yes, I celebrate Easter. I decorate my house, go to church, eat delicious food and gather with my loved ones on the feast day, but Easter changed the path of my heart forever.
My prayer is that my actions reflect the light of Him who illuminates the darkness and brings me Home. It shouldn’t take buying an Easter decoration for someone to recognize that I’m a Christian. My Easter joy should be apparent in my words and actions.