This is the day that the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it. Ps 118
Why rejoice and be glad? Because Jesus the Son of God, has overcome death and is risen. He has shown me that in our lives, we will suffer, we will die. But suffering and dying is a means to an end – a transformed life, a new life in Christ.
When I exclaim Alleluia, I am saying Alleluia, Praise the Lord to my life, to where I am heading, to what I believe in, to what I hope for. “Because He lives, I can face tomorrow. Because He lives, all fear is gone. Because I know….He holds the future and life is worth the living just because He lives.” As I hummed this song, praising and thanking God, Alleluia, even in this moment of sorrow and hardship that Brother COVID-19 is causing; physical suffering and economic difficulties, and not knowing when it will end, I tell myself that I must remain rooted in my faith, hold on to our Lord Jesus Christ and truly believe in joyful hope of the Resurrection and live the Easter blessing in my life.
Life goes on, remembering that my life has incorporated a pattern of suffering, dying and rising. This is not the first time that I suffer, die to myself and rise up by the grace of God. Today, I seek, “What newness is the Lord’s will for me in this Easter?”
“You must look for the things that are in heaven…Let your thoughts be on heavenly things, not on the things of the earth….” Col 3.1-2
O Lord, open my heart to see what, where and how I am to reorient my life? Oh, put into practice what you learnt. Palm Sunday? Tears for peace. Maundy Thursday? An example of loving service. Good Friday? “Forgive them.” Holy Saturday? Courageous wait in silence. Easter Sunday? New life to the full.
Let me show you how to live the Beatitudes beyond the mind. This is what the Kingdom of God is about?
Besides, love God, love yourself, love your neighbour, love creation. Live a life of simplicity, a life of prayer and a life of penance. Be instruments of justice, messengers of peace and reconciliation, bearers of hope and joy and light. Journey with others to live in freedom and be transformed by the one rule of love.
“Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers that they must leave for Galilee; they will see me there.” Mt. 28.10. Galilee was where Jesus spent much of his time on people, walking long distances to teach, proclaim the good news of the kingdom and heal people. Jesus was very attentive to the needs of others? Mt. 4.23-25.
Many have died due to Brother COVID-19. Many are suffering? So, where are you, God? Where is the Risen Lord in today’s world?
Ah, now I see. The Risen Lord in the selfless saving acts of humanity, especially those in the frontline personnels fighting to save the lives of people and scientists rushing to find a vaccine. The powerful love of God in the hearts of men and women everywhere. People are becoming more attentive to the needs, fears and anxieties of others. People are praying in solidarity with one another and caring for one another through various forms of assistance. Eg. Someone in Vietnam is offering free rice to the needy, a landlord in USA waiving his tenant’s rental for April, a company in Singapore offering free reusable cloth handmade mask to every resident and hand sanitizer to every household.
Many countries are implementing lockdown measures, issuing stay-home notice or quarantine now. People are living with the disruptions in their lives, taking up the pain and suffering in their stride, coping with the new normal of having Brother COVID19, adjusting to new ways of living and doing things, etc. I view these as living examples of Easter hope in the midst of the darkness around. This, to me, is the meaning of living the Risen Lord in their lives.
Just as He is present in the living, I realise He is also a victim of Brother COVID-19. I am speechless. “Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? (As the Scriptures say, “For your sake we are killed every day; we are being slaughtered like sheep.) No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us. And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow – not even the powers of hell can separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Rom 8.35-39 Thank you, Lord!
God will never leave us. In His will is our peace. Go, I must! To tell others of the good news that Jesus Christ is risen from the dead! And because of this, eternal life is ours for sure!
Alleluia, Praise the Lord.
So, I pray. Abba Father, I praise you, I thank you and I glorify you. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to reflect on Holy Thursday through Easter Sunday for the first time. Also, thanks to the Circuit Breaker measures to stay home to curb the spread of Brother COVID 19 that I can put my reflections in writing. Thank you Lord, for loving us so deeply, living in us and through us. Help us to go forth to share the good news of our Lord Jesus with others. And may we live in the Easter blessing always and be a beacon of hope, joy and light to those around us. We ask through Christ, our Lord. Amen