Christ is Risen! (The banner pictured above is from the Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem.) It’s Eastertide—and I’m still in liminal space. You see, an unexpected part of my Holy Week journey this year involved a family member receiving a lymphoma cancer diagnosis. While Christ is risen, he is having trouble rising to his feet. We have embarked on a journey through what is, for us, uncharted territory. There’s not much we can do at this point besides praying, loving, and talking. More tests lie ahead. The future is uncertain—and yet that’s always been the case for any human being on this journey of life.
It certainly was true for Jesus’ first disciples. Eastertide was liminal space. They hid in that upper room for days, behind locked doors, feeling fear and doubt. Even when Jesus appeared to them, they reacted with uncertainty and confusion. In one instance, he even tried to overcome their doubt and prove he was physically present (and not a ghost) by eating a piece of fish in their presence. Still, this idea of “resurrection” was completely foreign to them. (Remember, we have heard about this concept throughout our lives, even if we weren’t raised Christian or didn’t believe in it.) It took a while for the disciples to comprehend or imagine such a radical idea, much less embrace it.
In a similar way, it’s taking me a while to comprehend this family member having cancer. After all, he was walking two miles a day just three weeks ago. Yet, here I am, forcibly reminded of the preciousness and gift that is our daily life. I can lock the doors of my heart and tremble in fear and doubt, or I can embrace what appears on the other side of the door. I choose to live with love to the best of my ability as life and death—and resurrection—unfold around me.
What is your relationship with the idea of resurrection? How has it impacted your life and informed your choices? When and why have you lived in liminal space during Eastertide and other celebratory seasons?
Should you wish, please join me in prayer for my family member and for all who receive challenging health diagnoses during this Eastertide.