Thursday, April 12, 2012

Easter: A Season of Great Joy.

Easter is not over! Lent, our preparation for Easter, lasts for 40 days. For 40 days we deny ourselves everything from candy to hot showers and even sleep. We are putting aside our creature comforts in order to bare our souls and make room for a greater relationship with our Lord. So intent, somber and focused is our preparation that even at Mass we omit the beautiful music of the Gloria and the Alleluia before the Gospel. The point is, Lent is a time of long and intense preparation for Easter.

So we spend all of this time, 40 days (46 counting the Sundays and Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday), preparing for the joy of Easter. When Easter Sunday comes in the church the penitential purple of Lent is taken down and replaced with the gold that signifies the great celebration that is the Easter Season.

What you will notice for the next 50 days when you are in church is that the gold remains. The church will remain decorated with the gold of great celebration because the celebration of Easter is not over. However, in day to day life it seems that the importance of Easter is lost. In fact, the world would have us believe that Easter is one Sunday a year when we hunt colored eggs and shove our faces with candy and then it is back to business as usual. Is this what we spent 40 days preparing for? Or could it be that we have forgotten something or been mislead?

Don't settle for the impostor that would have us believe that Easter is about bunnies and candy! Easter is much more than this. Easter is central to our faith. We are celebrating the Glorious Resurrection of the Lord in which he has defeated  our enemy sin and death. Our joy at this should know no bounds. Such an earth shattering thing this is, can we even fathom what it means? Let's look past how comfortable we have grown with the idea. Let us stop seeing it as something that we are detached from. Let's take a moment (or 50 days) and see Easter for what it is; a great thing the Lord has done!


Friday, April 6, 2012

Good Friday

Although I don’t remember the exact words or even where I found it, the sentiment of something I read last year has really stuck with me. The author pointed out that on the first Good Friday there were 3 kinds of people present. Those who hated, mocked, beat, tormented, and ultimately crucified our Lord; those who loved Him and watched in horror as He was treated in such a way; and those who were indifferent to Him and what was happening.

Surely the people who treated Jesus in such a despicable way sadden Him, how could it not.  However, the author pointed out how those that were indifferent to Him must have really saddened Him. Here is Our Lord being beaten, mocked, tortured and executed in a most horrific and excruciating fashion. He didn’t have to endure this treatment but he did for our sake. Yet people were indifferent to Him. We all know how it feels to make a sacrifice for someone else and not be appreciated. What sacrifice has anyone of us made that can even begin to compare? Still we have felt the sting of indifference.

Today let us fast so as not to seem indifferent. Today let us spend more time in prayer so as to not seem indifferent. Today let us participate in the Liturgy of the Passion so as to not seem indifferent. Above all, today let us not be indifferent to the great thing our God has done for us.