We’re Resurrection People
April 29, 2022
I often wonder what it means to be Easter people when death is all around us.
Perhaps as it did for you, the two-year mark of the pandemic came with an additional set of baggage for me. An overwhelming kind of exhaustion set in.
I’m tired of holding plans loosely. Tired of not seeing family and friends to limit a risk of exposure. Tired of interacting with my church family over a screen. Tired of low-lying levels of anxiety alive within my body—anxiety that keeps me awake at night and makes a home in my lower back.
Death, of course, is in this exhaustion.
As the U.S. approaches one million deaths due to COVID-19, chances are each one of us knows someone who’s died from the virus. But death also lies in the ambiguous grief that accompanies our stories.
We are not the same people that we were two years ago, before all of this started. And sometimes, when death seems to be the only song that is sung, it’s hard to see life.
And it’s even harder, perhaps, to remember that we’re resurrection people.
But resurrection is not singular in nature. Resurrection is past, just as it is present and future. Just as Jesus lived, died, and was resurrected from the dead, as followers of Christ, ours is an ongoing, active kind of resurrection.
On Sundays, our mouths repeat the words that have been prayed by thousands of tongues for thousands of years: Christ has died. Christ has risen. Christ will come again.
Throughout the week, these ancient words creep into the stories of our lives, searing our souls and imprinting inside linings of our hearts.
These words speak to us through the seedlings that grow on our windowsills and unexpected interactions with our neighbors. This hope shows up through an encouraging word from a co-worker and a “just because” phone call from an old friend.
The past, present, and future of death and life, and then life again, keeps showing up, perhaps until our eyes can actually see it and our hearts can truly believe it.
Perhaps then we become resurrection people, for the thousandth time again.
Resurrection people, who see life, even in the midst of death.
Resurrection people, who have nothing but hope.
Maybe that is what it means.
Pamela A. Lewis
Thank you, Cara Meredith, for your beautiful and truthful reflection. You capture both the struggle of living with life’s death-dealing reality, as well as the faith that there will be hope and new life. And the best way to understand this is to look at our own lives, where time and again there is death and resurrection. Your words have brought this truth home for me.