27 April 2011
Even without the vigil readings, the Easter message proclaims the power of God in and through Jesus, his life, his teaching, his example, his execution, his resurrection. The alleluias are still ringing, the lilies are still blooming.
Many priests, pastors and preachers will follow their resurrection sermons with sermons on doubt. The story of Thomas forever known as the doubter because he wanted to be sure, to see for himself that the impossible was possible, is the next story in the designated lessons for churches that follow the lectionary.
While I am not preaching Thomas this year, I find myself reflecting on him. More, what he represents. The world in which Christ is risen looks a lot like the world in which Christ was executed. With very few exceptions. A few women saw conflicting and perhaps unconvincing evidence (on its own). God sent beings of power and light to proclaim the resurrection, interpret and exegete the evidence of the empty tomb, because there was room for doubt. We who believe, must believe them who we have never seen.
And we have learned to look for signs of resurrection in the world, like signs of spring in the midst of winter. And for too many, it is still winter. Those who were hungry before Easter are hungry still. Those who were lonely before Easter are lonely still. Those who were homeless before Easter are homeless still. Those who were broken before Easter are broken still. Some, perhaps not all.
We who say we have seen the signs of resurrection and believe live in a crucified and crucifying world. I don't blame Thomas for asking for proof. I want more than proof. I want to see the resurrection of the whole world. I want to see the power of Pentecost transform church and society. I want to see the reign of God in our midst, with liberty and justice for all. I'm waiting for the world to change. Call me Thomasina.