Easter Monday 2014: Forgetting

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So the Easter celebrations have finished; the eggs are half eaten, the midnight vigils are over, Sunday has come and gone. It’s the most dangerous part of the Easter season – the time of forgetting.

We don’t mean to, of course, but the everyday starts to intrude – we return to work, or race to beat the bank holiday traffic to make the most of our holidays. Kids have to be fed, dishwashers need to be empty, commuting and shopping and grabbing some sleep become our realities. Easter fades from view for another year.

Okay, maybe that’s just me. I’m the first to admit I’m better at thinking about the Bible than applying it, and it’s easy to lose sight of the implications of Jesus rising from the dead 2,000 years after the fact.

Still, it’s too easy to consolidate Easter into a one-off transaction that secures one of those heavenly mansions but that doesn’t place any more demands on us, other than maybe an hour or so every Sunday. But while we don’t earn grace, following Jesus remains a 24-7 call. And that’s a challenge.

But the forgetting can take other forms. An encounter with the risen Jesus can lead to us running away – Peter meets Jesus in the upper room, but he still ends up returning to his life as a fisherman for a time. He needs at least one more conversation with Jesus to get to grips with his mission.

Because Easter is all about new life, but sometimes we experience slow-burn resurrections. We head towards life in all its fullness but we get sidetracked, we stumble, we slowly work through a lifetime of baggage and biography with the Holy Spirit graciously nudging us in the right direction.

This is why Easter is every day: resurrection isn’t a one time deal. It’s about dying to things that hold us back and the birth of something better, and it’s about the establishment of a kingdom that embodies life rather than death. Listen out for it, for the emptiness of the tomb echoes down the ages. Forgetting cannot be an option.

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