I know I keep pointing out that Easter is a season, and not just one Sunday. But in the weeks since Easter it feels to me like the hope of that day is alive and growing among us. After the first Easter, it took the followers of Jesus a little while to get going. They weren’t sure what to do. They stayed in the upper room, locking the doors against the world outside. They didn’t quite know what to believe, or what to do about it. Some of them went back to fishing. Like lots of us in the aftermath of grief, they wandered around in a daze.
It took them a while, but they found their way into a new and sometimes uncomfortable future. They began to share a sense of community and compassion, deepening their ties with each other and welcoming others from outside – even way outside! Almost against their own plans, they recognized that the risen Christ was leading them far beyond the tomb. They met people unlike themselves, even people who were against them, and followed the lead of the Holy Spirit into unexpected places.
We continue to follow that same Spirit, seeking to be open to God’s leading in our own time. In the days since our Easter celebrations, we have met and served people in all kinds of ways. Some of us traveled to the mountain community of Weed, CA, to help rebuild homes after a disastrous fire. Others gathered to give thanks for the lives of good friends, welcoming family, friends and others with grace and compassion in time of grief. We have supported the work of Toberman Neighborhood Center. We are walking to help end hunger. We have welcomed new friends and celebrated the gift of baptism. We are working with youth in confirmation. These are just a few of the ways that the love of God and the joy of Easter are at work among us.
As we move through the coming seasons of grace, I want to express my gratitude for the movement of the Spirit in and through this community of faith. Like the first followers of Jesus, we can’t see where it will lead us. But we go with wonder and hope. And we go together.
Grace and peace,