Easter Hope in Everyday Life

I have always loved Easter. This may be one reason that I ultimately became an Anglican. Anglicans do Easter right. It is not one day out of the year, but rather a season we prepare for with Lent and a season we celebrate over fifty days, declaring our Alleluias and reveling in Christ’s victory over Satan, sin, and death. Even our funerals are Easter services, beginning with those words of hope from Jesus, “I am the resurrection and the life.”

In my own spiritual journey, coming to terms with the significance of the resurrection for everyday life transformed my understanding of what it meant to be a Christian in the here and now. When we prayer for God’s kingdom to come on earth as it is in heaven, we are asking God to break into our world with resurrection hope and resurrection life. And for me this insight, that the life of heaven could break into the life of earth, that the new creation was breaking in, if only in fits and starts, helped make sense of everyday life. It made me see work and family and recreation and everydayness through the lens of resurrection.

As N.T. Wright so ably puts it in his book Surprised by Hope, kingdom life is resurrection life:

“The point of the resurrection…is that the present bodily life is not valueless just because it will die…What you do with your body in the present matters because God has a great future in store for it…What you do in the present—by painting, preaching, singing, sewing, praying, teaching, building hospitals, digging wells, campaigning for justice, writing poems, caring for the needy, loving your neighbor as yourself—will last into God's future. These activities are not simply ways of making the present life a little less beastly, a little more bearable, until the day when we leave it behind altogether (as the hymn so mistakenly puts it…). They are part of what we may call building for God's kingdom.”

I pray that in these great fifty days God would do resurrection work in your hearts so that we all might walk deeper and deeper into the newness of life Jesus’ has won for us. I pray that God would redeem your everydayness, bring about what Marilynne Robinson calls “the resurrection of the ordinary.” 

- Chris+