Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Tuesday in the Octave of Easter

Mary Magdalene stayed outside the tomb weeping...
...Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?
Whom are you looking for?”
She thought it was the gardener and said to him,
“Sir, if you carried him away,
tell me where you laid him,
and I will take him.”
Jesus said to her, “Mary!”
She turned and said to him in Hebrew, “Rabbouni,”
which means Teacher. (JN 20:11-18)

We are now in the Easter Season, Jesus has risen, and yet just today, my spirit was jarred and stressed a bit over my to-do list for the day and the unexpected changes I had to make to my schedule. What gives? I had felt elation and joy on Easter Sunday. Now, as my "regular" schedule begins again, how do I allow that "new life" spirit to continue living into what seems like another week of my "old life."

I place myself in Mary Magdalene's shoes in the beginning of today's Gospel reading. The Lord has risen, but I am behaving like I don't yet fully realize it. And in my distress over the pressures of the day, I struggle to see and recognize Jesus in my life and what He is inviting me to live out. I have just spent 40 days in the desert for Lent and now we are on the other side of the story so to speak. I can hear Him gently saying,

There's a difference, Love. Can you see it?

The elation and joy that I felt on Easter Sunday was real and true. I can hear Him even more,

Rediscover that day. Examen it. Tell me about it.

And as I walk through once again that day, now removed from living through it in real time, I find that I can slow down moments and savor the graces even more. I can recall the smiles and laughter of each person I ran with during our Easter Morning 10k run. I can relish once again being able to cook with my sisters and family in my older sister's new home. I can sit with sitting down with my boyfriend, Kevin, seeing his smile and hearing his laugh, in spite of being on call during a trying work weekend. I can re-read the loving text messages with friends. The list begins to flow and continue. 

And the common theme I see is connection. Savoring the graces of that day means honoring the people and connections in my life. Perhaps that is why I enjoy the ending of today's Gospel so much. Jesus tells Mary to stop holding onto him and sends her off to meet with others. 

I don't know that we were meant to keep the joy of Easter to ourselves. When I look back to the desert, it felt at times, so isolating and alone. But here, on the other side, living out the spirit of "new life" perhaps means living out the spirit of a "shared life" with Jesus and others.

The external circumstances of my life may not have changed when the seasons changed this past Sunday. Work is still work. Training is still training. My schedule is still… insane. But the key to the difference can be found in unlocking over and over again, the graces of Easter that can only be deepened when rediscovered.

Jesus, please help us to remember the graces of Easter. Help them to take root, deepen, and grow stronger each day of this new season. Help us to live this new life, shared in communion, with you.

Reflected by Rae Visita

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