Luke 20: 27-40 The Dead Shall Rise
It is only fitting that the day before we celebrate the solemnity of Christ the King we have the Gospel passage of the widow with seven husbands. It is a clear indication that the Lord is not only Sovereign of the Universe but also of life and death. He is the God of the living and the God who raises the dead. But before we get too far ahead, we must remember the reason why we celebrate this feast, this solemnity.
Life is filled with little “Gethsemanes” – these moments of darkness where life becomes difficult to navigate. Life is beautiful and filled with great expectations, but it is the unexpected, the tsunamis, that can cause so much fear to reign in our lives. Before I can rejoice in rediscovering my lost treasure, I must go through gallons of sweat and sleepless nights as I search far and wide to find my lost possession. Instead of feeling the warmth of the Good Shepherd, I will feel the cold, the loneliness, of the lost sheep. “The Lord is my light and my Salvation - whom shall I fear.” (Ps 27:1) Why do I fear? Why am I afraid? Because it doesn’t begin this way. Yes, the Lord is my light and my salvation, but it doesn’t begin this way. It begins with darkness and cold, loneliness and fear, murder and death. It begins with the crucifixion. Thank God it doesn’t end that way. Our story only gets better.
Blessed be the Lord, my Rock! (Ps 144:1) I remember feeling so sick to my stomach as I was traveling on a little boat in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, heading towards the island of Capri. It was a beautiful day but the waves were high and the waters choppy and I was beginning to feel, almost immediately, the symptoms of sea sickness. I was not in a good spot. We still had a few miles to go and I really didn’t know what to do. I looked down and I felt worse. Up and I nearly threw up! The man who was driving our little boat must have seen the look on my face and he told me to stare at a rock that was not too far away from us. He told me, “Look at the rock. Keep your eyes on the rock. Don’t let your eyes off the rock.” I did and I almost instantly felt better. I’ve talked to a lot of people after this and they don’t seem to buy the fact this could have made me feel better, but it is the truth. The massive rock protruding out of the sea helped keep my mind, my eyes and my stomach steady. No wonder why the Lord is my Rock! It must have been a fisherman to have written this psalm. After all, what good is a rock in the middle of the desert?
The crucifixion is not the end of our story. It is only the beginning. There will be moments in our lives when we feel lost, abandoned, forgotten, and lonely. The end of the Lord’s story is not his crucifixion, it is His resurrection and it will be the same for us. We will rise from the dead. He will help us find our way out of the tunnel, for there is light at the end of this dark tunnel.
Right now, are you in the middle of a dark, lonely tunnel? Then stand firm and be faithful; if we proceed in the manner that the Lord gave to us (I am the Way, the Truth and the Life), then we will find our way out of the tunnel and that will be the end of our Gethsemane. Do not curse the Lord. If I choose to do His Will faithfully, then the Father will do what he will faithfully.
Stand firm! Be faithful! “Blessed be the Lord, my Rock!” Do what is right, good and holy and you will find your way out of the tunnel and into His wonderful light. He is the God of the living!