Living the Easter spirit
Easter Sunday The Resurrection of the Lord
By Fr. Roy Cimagala
The joyous celebration of Easter Sunday clearly tells us that Christ indeed as risen! That’s why we sing, Alleluia, alleluia. As a psalm would put it: “This is the day that the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it.” (118,24)
With his resurrection, he has conquered sin and death, and has given us a new life in him. We are now a new creation, with the power from Christ to conquer sin and death and everything else that is not in keeping with our dignity as children of God.
As St. Paul would put it, “If we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with Him.” (Rom 6,8) And he continued, “For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, He cannot die again. Death no longer has dominion over him.” (6,9)
And so, we have every reason that we can live forever in Christ over whom death no longer has dominion. In spite of whatever, we have every reason to be happy and confident, as long as we are faithful to Christ.
With the celebration of Easter, we are told by our Christian faith that we are made new. We are now a new creation. And to make ourselves new again after we have fallen into sin and thus putting ourselves in the system of getting old and dying, we need to be forgiven, to receive God’s mercy.
Christ’s death on the cross and his resurrection actually represent the ultimate of divine mercy and forgiveness. His death represents his bearing and assuming all the sins of men, from that of Adam and Eve to the last sin that still has to be committed, of the last man who still has to be born. His resurrection represents his victory over sin and death. His death and resurrection therefore comprise the ultimate of divine mercy.
There’s just a very interesting passage in the Book of Lamentation in the Old Testament that can give more forcefulness to this divine mercy that is responsible for making us a new creation.
It says: “Through the LORD’s mercies we are not consumed, because His compassion fails not. They are new every morning. Great is your faithfulness.” (Lam 3,22-23)
Let’s remember that in this Easter season, we are called to become an Easter person. And the way is laid open for us to be so. It’s for us to take it up and go the distance.
To be an Easter person is first of all a gift from God. It’s his divine will for us, since we are his image and likeness, and adopted children of his. For sure, we achieve the fullness of our being Easter persons in heaven. But here on earth, we need to work it out. We have to move toward it.
The grace for this purpose is given to us abundantly. Everything that we need to attain this goal is provided by God’s providence. But we have to correspond. New wine requires new wineskins too. And as St. Augustine once said: “He who created us without us, cannot save us without us.”
To be an Easter person is for us to realize that as persons we need to unify and integrate all the parts and aspects of our life, with God through Christ in the Spirit as the principle, means and end of such unity and integration. What we should try to avoid is to be fragmented in these parts and aspects. In other words, it is for us to live a unity of life in Christ.