Sunday, April 24, 2011

The Feast of the Resurrection 2011

At Paschaltide, we find ourselves faced with one of the apparent paradoxes of our Christian Faith. It isn't really a paradox, but the details take some working out in our little mortal heads and this is often too much for them - we are forced to sit in confused silence until there is some resolution. That resolution may not actually answer the question but we will know God in our stillness. The task is to be still, to put aside the little we know or think we know -perhaps just for a moment or perhaps for ever - and allow ourselves to be touched by the Divine Truth. Christ's resurrection can be for us an opportunity for transformation.

Nonetheless, we still experience paradox and this impacts greatly on the way we live our lives. We have to cope and learn to cope. We are faced with the Immortal God who dies, the transcendent God who walks among us, the unapprochable Creator who bids us not only approach but share an incredible (almost) intimacy with Him.

Perhaps this weird and painful little life that we live is precisely the resolution of the paradox of God in order for us to share a proper relationship with Him. Our present existence acts as a buffer between what we perceive to be contradictory positions. We have so many difficult concepts to grasp, of predestination, election and free-will, of God Transcendent and Immanent, of Christ both human and divine. All of these occur precisely because of our feebleness in this mode of existence.

In order to be truly free, we have to know the consequences of our freedom. In order to know God, we also have to know not-God. In order to know joy, we need to know pain. In order to know Eternity we have to know death. It is up to our own God who does not wish our destruction in any way to show us these things by His example of the alternatives. God does it so that we don't have to. And then He rises from the Dead in the greatest challenge to our thinking.

Of course, many may scoff at this - Jesus said they would. We, on the other hand as St Benedict says, should never despair of God's mercy. Our Christian Faith allows us to live certainly in the midst of paradox, crisis, horror and misery and still know that we are loved as far as our existence extends in Reality. We may seek understanding, but true and complete understanding will only come at the end.

For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.

Wishing you all the very best this Paschaltide.

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