The Easter season has only just begun. Did you realize that? As United Methodists, we celebrate a season of Easter rather than a singular Sunday that happens to come around once a year in the springtime. We are encouraged to hold fast to the hope of Resurrection still sprouting up all around us – little signs here and there – as well as large signs that Christ is alive and present with us in all the experiences of our lives and world. And we are also invited to become those signs whenever and however we can.
This requires a certain amount of effort and discipline because so much of what we see and hear in the day-to-day is related to death and defeat and situations that appear impossible, doubtful, divisive, empty, sad, etc., etc. It’s easy to allow such things to overwhelm us as if they are the only reality. It is also easy to feel as though our own good faith efforts are inessential in the whole scheme of things. But that’s simply not true.
I want to encourage you to take a fresher look and to pay closer attention to the ways the living Christ is still breathing in on you and how you might make that presence known. We are Easter people after all, and like our Lord, we are to be taken, blessed, broken, and given away for the greater good. There is purpose to our living and work for us to do.
Today, I want to also ask you to be prayerful about our beloved United Methodist Church and its future over the next few years. On Tuesday, the Judicial Council met in Newark, New Jersey to determine the fate of Bishop Karen Oliveto, the denomination’s first openly gay bishop who was elected last July. To read more about the case click here. Regardless of the Council’s decision, there will be significant impact on our denomination. May we find the courage to be a transformed body, infused by God’s spirit, and an effective witness to the new thing God is doing for such a time as this.
Grace and peace,