Fear or Faith?
But Thomas said to them, “Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands, and put my finger in the mark of the nails and my hand in his side, I will not believe.” (John 20)
We walk by faith and not by sight; with gracious words draw near,
O Christ, who spoke as none e’er spoke: “My peace be with you here.” (ELW #635)
At the height of the Great Depression President Franklin Delano Roosevelt said, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” In the 70’s columnist/humorist Irma Bombeck entitled one of her books The Grass is Always Greener on the Other Side of the Septic Tank. Both are true in their own way and remind us of the power and truth of Easter. Do not be afraid of the unknown, the future, the what-could-be, or the what-may-or-may-not-happen. Like the angel told Mary at Jesus tomb, do not be afraid, he is not here, he has risen. Life isn’t always smooth, but fear need not rule our lives. Better to let the God of love rule.
Our music throughout the Easter season is almost unrelentingly joyful, and indeed it should be, Easter is a celebration of living! But whole story, and life, is more complex. I look for that in the music I pick for this season, like the hymn and verse I quote above. The disciples, gathered in utter despair and loss after the crucifixion, are surprised and amazed by the presence of Jesus among them, and the peace it brings. Where or when have you been surprised and amazed by the presence of the God of love? Did that encourage you to live a life of faith or fear?