April 9, 2023 — The Resurrection of the Lord
ACTS 10:34A, 37-43; PS 118:1-2, 16-17, 22-23; COL 3:1-4 OR 1 COR 5:6B-8; JN 20:1-9
The great feast of Easter has begun, Christian stewards. Let us rejoice and be glad! Just as we embraced the discipline and fasting of Lent, let us fully embrace the joy and feasting that the next 50 days offer. We are called to be good stewards of the Easter season.
Our first reading, from Acts, gives instruction on how to do this. Here, St. Peter says that our Lord, “commissioned us to preach to the people and testify that he is the one appointed by God as judge of the living and the dead… that everyone who believes in him will receive forgiveness of sins through his name.” How do we ordinary people preach and testify to all God has done? By the way we live our ordinary lives — through the intentional use of our time, talent, and treasure for the kingdom of God. Putting God and others ahead of ourselves in every aspect of our lives is the most eloquent preaching we can do. Boldly and joyfully embracing a stewardship way of life is our most powerful testimony.
Reflecting on today’s Gospel passage from John and studying the actions of the first witnesses to the Resurrection gives us further insight into how we should live the Easter season.
First, we learn of Mary Magdalene’s response. She “came to the tomb early in the morning, while it was still dark.” Despite the trauma of just having witnessed the crucifixion of the Lord Whom she loved so much, Mary Magdalene remained focused on Him, not on herself and her own sense of loss. In fact, forgetting herself entirely, she made her way to the tomb in the dark so she could be near Him. Once she realized that the tomb was empty we read that she “ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple…” to tell them this shocking news. In response, we read that “they both ran, but the other disciple ran faster and arrived at the tomb first.”
They ran to see all of this for themselves. These first witnesses of Christ’s mission and message, His death, and now His Resurrection were passionate. As stewards, we are called to this same devotion to our Lord, this same passion, and the same determination to remain near to Him no matter what.
This will look different depending on our own circumstances. Perhaps it will mean committing to a weekday Mass throughout the Easter season to rejoice in all that the Lord has done for us through His death and Resurrection. Perhaps it will mean getting up “in the dark” of the early morning to reflect on the daily Gospel. Perhaps we will gather our courage and finally speak to that friend or co-worker about what the Lord means to us and how they can have His grace in their lives, too. Maybe we will be inspired to host an Easter feast for friends and neighbors at some point during the next 50 days of celebration.
As Christian stewards, we are the modern-day witnesses of an incredible miracle prompted by unfathomable love — the death and Resurrection of our Savior for us. Let us rejoice and be glad, and let’s make sure our lives are a testimony to this amazing grace!