Glow of Possibility

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In a little while the world will no longer see me, but you will see me; because I live, you also will live.

—John 14:19

Sometimes I don’t feel very Easter-y on Easter. Living in New England, the pastel and spring motifs are few and far between the snow piles and unfriendly-to-bare-legs weather. The empty tomb needs to be shoveled out and salted on occasion where I live.

But I can isolate a single moment when I stopped in my tracks and felt fully, totally Easter-y. It was January 24 in the late afternoon, and I was standing in the parking lot of our local supermarket. I was going about my post-work errands when I realized: I could see my hands; my car keys; my shopping list. They were sprinkled with the last edges of daylight above the concrete skyline, and for the first time in weeks, I saw that I was not functioning in the dark, but there was a glimmer of light lingering over me.

I had become so used to the months of functioning in the darkness of winter—dark in the morning, dark by the end of the workday—that seeing my hands anew in that orange glow set my heart on fire. It was a matter of minutes before the sun set, and back into the darkness we went, errands still ahead, snow still surrounding me.

But it was a reminder that the light was there. The tomb is empty, I kept repeating to myself that January evening.

Jesus speaks often of the ways the disciples and the people will encounter him in the Gospel of John, and he has already promised them that he will be with them to the end of the ages. We fix those times of his revelation and appearances to the disciples to the subsequent Sundays of the lectionary year following Easter Day. However we may allocate the ministry, death, and resurrection of Jesus to be encountered in an orderly fashion in our worship, the moments of revelation, possibility, and triumph of the empty tomb are accessible most any day if we are seeking it. 

It wasn’t glaring light, that evening. It wasn’t pastel or timpani. It was glow of possibility bathing my grocery list with just enough orange and purple to make me look up from the snow piles and into the light.

— Kit Lonergan

Photo: “Snowed In,” Michael Niessl on Unsplash

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