On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being locked where the disciples were for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” -John 20:19
The Gospels tell us very little about the Saturday between Jesus’s death and resurrection, but we can certainly gather that it was a day filled with despair, dread and fear. The followers of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, witnessed their Lord be arrested, tortured and heinously slaughtered. The Gospels tell us all of the disciples, except for John, denied and abandoned Jesus, and they hid themselves away behind locked doors, fearing for their lives.
Why was this their reaction? After all, Jesus told them numerous times throughout the Gospels that He would be killed and raised from the dead on the third day. They knew He was the Christ and the Son of God. So why did they turn their backs on Him and flee in fear? Why could they not wait until resurrection the following day?
Often, we know the truth in our minds, but that truth does not make its way to our hearts. Especially in seasons of waiting and uncertainty, we disaggregate what we hold as true in theory and what we hold as true in practice. There was incredible hope in the promise Jesus made to His disciples that He would rise from the dead, but they did not cling to it. There is even greater hope and joy for us. We know that Christ will return in glory, creating a new world for us to dwell in perfect harmony with God for all eternity. This should drive everything we do, especially how we wait. But often, it does not.
It is hard to be patient, especially when so much evil swarms around us. In this fallen world, threats both spiritual and physical loom over us at all times. But as Christians, the Holy Spirit dwells within us, and He offers us strength, boldness and peace in the face of these trials. Thus, we are called to wait with patience and faith for the world to come. This is not easy, but it is liberating. Rather than needing to guard our own lives, we can trust that the God of the universe holds our lives in His hands. He will not forsake us, and He will continue to refine and sanctify us as we wait faithfully.
King Jesus, You are so good, righteous, and holy. You took on the burden for our sins and crushed death when You rose again. Draw near to us as we wait. Do not allow us to fall into the sins of despair or resentment, but instead fill us with joy and hope. Even when we cannot see good in the world around us, we can look to You and see the ultimate good. Do not allow us to turn from You and hide when we come under fire, but instead empower us to stand firm in our obedience to You. Comfort us and strengthen us in the knowledge of Your saving grace. In Your holy and precious name we pray, amen.
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About the Author:
Kevin Flores is a third-year at the University of Chicago and Senior Design Editor of Cana.