What does it mean to be “resurrection people”?
This is a question that Christ followers should be asking ourselves every day. St. Augustine said that “we are an Easter people and our song is Alleluia”. It is this reality, charged with the words of St. Francis of Assisi to “preach the Gospel at all times and when necessary use words” that marks what it looks like to be a people who practice resurrection daily. I really believe that how we love others by caring for them; how we protect and serve one another especially during times of stress, turbulence, suffering, broken relationships and injustice is truly how the world will know that we are Christ’s disciples and how the world will come to know the saving grace of Jesus for themselves.
Good Friday marks us as God’s remembering, forgiven people and Easter marks us as a found and free people. It is humbling to consider that some of the most powerful Easter songs we know and sing today are songs written by a cloud of witnesses who lived in isolation, slavery, segregation and apartheid – all sustained by the reality that God is greater than any circumstance we may face and sovereign over all! Being a resurrection people is about being a people of hope but not only for ourselves.
When you form a circle with a group of people, you almost always face inward but Easter calls us to link arms in the grace what we’ve experienced in Jesus and then face outward to extend an invitation to the world in love and embrace to see the acceptance, forgiveness and wholeness that can be found in Christ. It’s at the cross that we understand how righteousness and peace kiss each other, where justice and mercy meet. This implies a laying down of arms, a hospitality and welcoming in of strangers and even those who were once our enemies, to a life of forgiveness because of how we ourselves have been forgiven.
Ephesians 2:12-13 says, “remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise; without hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus, you who were once far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ.”
We were all once strangers but in Christ we can be brothers and sisters! If ever there was a call to peace and unity it lies in that truth. Being a resurrection people has never been about being perfect but rather living our lives transformed and empowered to serve the only one who is.