Easter is not simply some theological concept, carefully constructed by those bent on codifying God into bite-sized pieces for our consumption. Into our minds that sometimes prefer something to believe than someOne to follow, Easter still comes.

As streets run red with the blood of the innocent, and lives are rendered expendable to the powerful and futile to the powerless, Easter still comes.

To the modern Pharisees, more interested in good ecclesiastical bottom lines and bumper-sticker quarterlies than actual change that might question their empire, Easter still comes.

When gun in hand becomes more treasured than hand in hand, and the liturgy of flag trumps the liturgy of church, Easter still comes.

When young girls make our clothes all day and service ominous needs at night but we’re too busy to worry about it; when we’re more willing to ignore than believe, Easter still comes.

Throats dry and parched, faces caked with unwanted tears, we watch our child waste away from deplorable disease. Into hopelessness, Easter still comes.

To the war whores who secretly manufacture threat, constructed to ensure our patronage, using the currency of hate and fear, and rename profit: security, Easter still comes.

We’ve suffered in the silent hell of addiction, our resolve wasting away as fast as our self-respect. When all hope of freedom and healing is gone, Easter still comes.

Dan Miller, in the previous blog post, calls Easter the “emphatic answer to our human and holy quest.” He suggests that Easter pours itself as healing balm into very parched and thirsty souls; of our deepest desire and need. Moreover, he observes that, although it remains God’s overwhelming gift to us, it also requires something of us.

Possibly the greatest gift Easter brings is the possibility of awakening from slumber. To be visited by life in the midst of death, by hope in the midst of hopelessness, by truth in the midst of lies, is for us to be gifted with a whole new way of seeing.

In this season of Eastertide, we await the coming of the Holy Breath at Pentecost. It is the capstone for those who seek to follow the Way of Jesus; the Way of the Cross…the Way of Resurrection. We’re gifted with God’s eyes to see goodness when before all we could see was mournful sadness. We see evil when before we remained delightfully ignorant. And there arises in us a longing for the wholeness that characterizes the heart of God: for us, and for the world.

May we be courageous enough to be vessels of grace and hope through and into which Easter still comes.

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Robert Alan Rife

Robert Rife, M.A., minister of worship and music for Yakima Covenant Church (formerly Westminster Presbyterian) in Yakima, Washington, is a self-proclaimed book-nerd-word-herder, multi-instrumentalist (including Highland Bagpipes!), singer-songwriter, studio musician, choral director, poet, and liturgist. He maintains two personal blogs: Innerwoven and Robslitbits. He also blogs at Conversations Journal. Robert describes his vocation as exploring those places where life, liturgy, theology, and the arts intersect with and promote spiritual formation.

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