Even in the darkest of moments in time there is still the remote possibility of hope. On this Holy Saturday while we remember the darkness in between Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection, one of the important angles to keep in mind is how the original disciples must have felt on this day. We, of course, know the end of the story. We know that Christ is about to be risen from death and that the tomb will be empty. But Peter, James, John, and the rest of Christ’s followers had no idea this was going to occur.
Let’s take the thought even a bit further: what was Jesus experiencing during this time in the grave? I know it is a crazy thought, but Jesus completely and fully entrusted himself to the Father. Did he ever have a doubt or wonder if things would shake out as we now know they would? Sometimes we might lose sight of the reality that Jesus is quite fully a human with all of the limitations that go with it. Christ knows full well how difficult it can be to live life on this earth surrounded by sin, evil, and trouble. He knows what it feels like to be afflicted, to be forsaken, to be profoundly touched by the sin of others.
But suffering does not have the last word. “My soul continually remembers it [affliction] and is bowed down within me. But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” These are not just words from the prophet Jeremiah; they are the thoughts of Christ himself. Jesus placed his faith and hope in the Father. The disciples placed their faith and hope in Jesus. We, as well, must discover that darkness and death never have the last word. The last word is always and forever GRACE. It is the mercy of God that trumps death and every evil practice and each sinful agenda. Wait for it… wait for it….
Almighty God, grant that in your mercy I might obtain the result of your passion: forgiveness of sins and new life in Jesus Christ, who loved me and gave himself for me. Amen.