Today was a strange day. I woke up surprisingly energetic and feeling a little courageous with my Sunday attire. Instead of throwing on some jeans, a T-shirt, and a sweater; I threw on some slacks, a shirt and tie, and an old suit-jacket that I think came from Good Will at one point. Tying my shoes, tightening my tie, and checking to see if I had anything sticking out of my teeth, I thought that today was going to be awesome.
Typical Easters leave me feeling spiritual. I usually meditate over what Jesus’ death on the cross and His resurrection mean to me, which leaves me pouring over Scripture careless of what homework I may have. Today, though, I didn’t really think of the resurrection. I mean, I knew that’s why today was important, but for whatever reason, my mind was elsewhere.
I wish I knew exactly where it was, but I can’t remember. Instead of dreaming in the six hours of sleep last night, I dreamt throughout the day about meaningless things like saving a pretty girl from a grizzly bear with only my machete or what rank I would have if Star Fleet were real (that might not be too meaningless). Hardly did the empty tomb cross my mind and I’m left wondering why.
It’s a payment that could never be paid by any of us. Even our own individual debts are too overwhelming for us to pay them off (kind of like my student loans will be). Jesus’ torture before the cross, His suffering on the cross, and finally His death completed the payment for our sins, which is why He said “It is finished.” Why then is the resurrection important? Well, without it, the promise of eternal life couldn’t be given. The sins were erased, yes, but the promise of eternal life could only come from the One who conquered death. I’m not sure how it all works out, but that’s basically what I’ve gotten out of my Sunday school lessons. And it is this day that we celebrate that resurrection because it means that God fulfilled His promises. It means the door to life is now open. But looking at what I did today, you couldn’t tell that I was excited about this.
After church, I got lunch, dropped a friend off at her apartment, went back home, watched several episodes of “How I Met Your Mother,” changed clothes, and went and got coffee to hopefully start homework. Bringing my Dutch Bros mocha with me, I sat down at the Borders coffee shop to crack open a few books I’m supposed to have read by tomorrow. Not even five minutes after sitting down, an announcement came over the speakers saying Borders was closing at 7 instead of 10. I moved to Starbucks, read for a couple hours, and then got dinner at Qdoba. The cool thing about dinner is that it cost me only 99¢; the drink I bought at 7/11. Apparently, when you have a Qdoba rewards card and buy ten burritos, you get the eleventh free. Yeah, I go there a lot. It’s a problem. I need help. But as I was eating my shredded beef burrito with its tasty cheese, sour cream, pinto beans and rice, I thought over something about Easter.
For the most part, we’re supposed to remember what happened nearly two thousand years ago that changed the course of human history forever. We’re supposed to get excited about Jesus, about Scripture, and about church. But what I started getting excited about as I bit into a surprising chunk of steak in my burrito was what tomorrow brings. Sure, days like today bring spiritual highs where you just can’t get enough of Jesus. But what about the day after when the atmosphere returns to the mundane every day life? What am I to do when tomorrow comes and I don’t have my suit and tie, my churchy smile, and all the Facebook statuses about Jesus’ resurrection? What am I to do when the temporal excitement that typically comes with this day dies? I thought about this while picking tortilla bits off the back of my teeth with my tongue and I think the answer rests within the meaning of this day.
Jesus died to pay for our sins, yes; to give us eternal life, yes; but most importantly, to let us see Him. By taking our punishment and rising from the grave, conquering death, He bridged the gap between man and God. We are now able to enter in a relationship, one much deeper than any this world could ever provide, with Him, Jesus, Yahweh. And the cool thing about Jesus (other than the fact that He could make Star Fleet real if He wants to) is that He has no limit. Sunday services can’t contain Him, religious agendas can’t restrain Him, and not even death can detain Him; He is an untamable Lion. When tomorrow comes, I won’t need to depend on the religious system of Christianity; because of His death and resurrection, I can depend on Him directly and no one else.
I have read a lot of novels. The greatest thing about novels, I think, is their ability and their frequency to highlight mundane and boring events. I find this as the greatest thing about them because I think they do the best job in highlighting reality. I can’t speak on behalf of everyone, but I think most of life is spent in boring moments. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve almost fallen asleep in class or at work. And I can’t recall the number of long drives home where I think about nothing, literally nothing, for two hours straight. Life is boring. We can’t hide from it with our ecstatic Sunday services that only give us a temporal spiritual high instead of a steady, stable everlasting love for Jesus. What Easter means to me is the ability to approach my God, my Savior, my Lord, my King, my Redeemer, my Messiah, my Christ, my Father without worrying about if it’s Sunday or if I’m at a Bible study. He has no limits; there is nowhere where He cannot go. Jesus’ resurrection enables us to see Him throughout the boring rituals of our day to day lives. We don’t need a religious system because we have Jesus.