Grace and peace to you all from God Our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ our Risen Lord in communion with Holy Spirit, one Eternal God.
LIKE THE BLIND WE GROPE ALONG THE WALL, FEELING OUR WAY LIKE MEN WITHOUT EYES. AT MIDDAY WE STUMBLE AS IT WERE TWILIGHT; AMONG THE STRONG, WE ARE LIKE THE DEAD. ( Isaiah 59:10 )
FOR IT IS LIGHT THAT MAKES EVERYTHING VISIBLE. THIS IS WHY IT IS SAID: – WAKE UP, O SLEEPER, RISE FROM THE DEAD AND CHRIST WILL SHINE FOR YOU ! ( Ephesians 5:14 )
Easter is the time when God turned the inevitability of death into the invincibility of life. It happened as “morning has broken” and light came forth, revealing the fact of Resurrection. The empty tomb became the symbol of the Christian Faith and Hope and Love. It tells us about a new life that comes at a time we do not expect and reminds us that all the experiences of pain, grief and dying are overtaken by the presence of Christ, the One who was crucified and now is alive.
The Resurrection is not a divine “get-out-of-jail” free card that immunises people from pain, suffering or death. To jump too quickly to Resurrection runs the risk of trivialising people’s pain and seemingly cheapens or nullifies their sense of loss. This is why the Son of God had to be born human, to suffer and die, in order to make the impossible possible and the invisible visible. Through the Light of the World, God, whom nobody has ever seen before becomes visible in the Risen Christ. Without Him we just grope along the wall and stumble at midday as if it were twilight. The Risen Christ makes everything visible, revealing the unlimited Love of God, given to “whosoever” believes in Him to not perish but have eternal life.
Experts warn that the Coronavirus is likely to peak in Britain at Easter, with thousands more infected and to cause the worst chaos since World War II. As Jesus’ disciples were hiding at Easter morning with the doors locked for fear of the unknown ( John 20:19) , we still are in self isolation, fearing the worst of this COVID-19 Coronavirus Pandemic, missing our Easter worships and Holy Communions in our church or even the Sunrise Service at the Lump. As to His disciples long ago,- the Risen Christ now comes to us in our lockdown and offers the same, saying: Peace be with you ! Indeed,- how much we need the peacefulness of our hearts to be restored by the power of His Holy Spirit, accompanied by the revelation of His wounds in the Holy Communion,- which has to be DELAYED for us this time, till we meet again.
If we think only of the things that are visible, we are bound to see life that way. But there is another way. The Bible says of Moses: he persevered because he saw Him who is invisible ( Hebrews 11:27 ). Robert Louis Stevenson tells of an old crofter, who once was asked by someone how he could go on doing the same hard work, day in and day out. The old man answered: He that has something ayont (beyond) need never weary.
Many of us will ever remember Her Majesty the Queen’s faithful and comforting words, addressed a week ago : We should take comfort that while we may have more still to endure, better days will return. We will be with our friends again; we will be with our families again; we will meet again !
Let us pray:
The Church is locked, but let our hearts be opened to Your Presence; there let us make your Easter Garden, plant it with faith, hope and love, and let the heavy stone of the deadly lockdown be rolled away. Give us your Resurrection-power through which Your Son rose again and His followers could bounce back from despair and hopelessness. May that glorious message assure us, however low life may bring us and however hard we fall, You will lift us up to new horizons. When strength fails and faculties diminish, advancing years taking their toll, remind us that You bring new beginnings – life that will never fade. When hearts are broken, lives wrecked by sickness, fear, hurt and sorrow, reach out to all who feel they cannot carry on, and give them strength and renewed confidence in these hard times. Be with the Leaders of the World in all their decision-making, bless Her Majesty the Queen and Her Family, support the Prime Minister and the Governments of our land. Be with the Christian Church Universal in all its branches, with our Church of Scotland in its Presbyteries and Congregations. Bless Your Church here in Portree and all our sisters and brothers in Skye and everywhere. Be with our loved ones and all whom we’ve never met nor will meet and give us a blessed Easter, through Jesus Christ our Risen Lord. AMEN.
Let’s say together The Lord’s Prayer: OUR FATHER, WHO ARE IN HEAVEN…
May the Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with us both now and for ever more.
HAPPY EASTER TO YOU ALL !
Sándor, your Minister.