This Resurrection Sunday feels a little bit different. It seems pregnant with purpose and possibilities. Every year we are asked the question; “What are you giving up for Lent?” We usually choose something we think we can manage because the fear of failing in the midst of the 40 days. We might choose giving up sweets, or coffee, or negative people. We typically are successful and on this day we rush out to get the sweets or buy a cup of coffee. It always seemed like a rote exercise. It is akin to New Years’ Resolutions. We go hard for 40 days (if that much), and then we return to “normal.”
Not this year. This year we were all forced to go somewhere and sit down and be still. We had to give up a whole lot that we thought we couldn’t do without. We gave up hectic schedules that were leading us to burnout. We gave up the rush hour in the mornings, and fighting the traffic at night. We gave up that sense that what we do and what we have define us. We gave up our feelings of superiority because we might have two or three degrees behind our names. We gave up the club, the golf course, the parties, the happy hours, and the need to always feel that we must be busy at all times.
So yes, this Resurrection Sunday feels different. As I am apart from my family during this ordeal/Lenten season, I find myself living on campus by myself as my commuting between two cities was abruptly stopped due to safety concerns. I walked the campus just to get out of my apartment. In those walks, I got the sense that God placed us all on one big “Timeout.” In these walks I can hear Him saying: you lost your time at the golf course, but you gained time with me. You lost time trying to be a fixer of everything, but you have been fixed with a different perspective. You lost time moving at a mile a minute, now all you have is time to pause long enough to see the beauty and tapestry of the colors of the spring flowers that you had not taken notice of in years. You lost time crunching numbers, but you had a chance to read, relax and rejuvenate.
You looked to the titans of business and what your accounting and finance courses and experiences taught you, but now you realize that the people society often times don’t give a second thought are more valuable than the folks who get the most airtime and press. You have been reintroduced to the importance of doctors, nurses, grocery store workers, first responders, truck drivers, custodians, and so many more. You were reintroduced to see how important teachers are to ecosystem of our society. Without them shaping and preparing the minds of the generations to come we will be in a world of hurt for successive decades. So maybe now we will rank them up there with superstar politicians, athletes and business people. Just maybe we will find ways to compensate them at higher levels because of what they contribute to our society.
Now, when we walk out of this Lenten season, we must walk out of it with a new purpose. A new focus on community. A new relationship with those who we walk by every day and look down upon because they don’t have what we have. We should have a stronger heart for the poor and needy. A heart for the young person who is struggling with anxiety and depression. A strong heart for the elderly who are our legacy of wisdom and experience. If we take the approach that we were shut in for a reason, we will come out searching for the answers. We cannot come out of this the same way we went in. It is okay to go back to the sweets, coffee, and the golf course, but take someone along with you who have never experienced them before. Try to repair broken relationships despite who was right or who was wrong. Time is too short. Share a little more and remember we are our brothers’ keeper. We are all in this thing together.
Peace and blessings.