Last post I talked some about the wonderful hymnody that we have that helps us make sense of Holy Week – of Christ’s betrayal, arrest, torture, and crucifixion. This week, I want to highlight the words of a great Easter hymn.
Now, understand that there are a lot of great Easter hymns. I love singing Charles Wesley’s hymn “Christ the Lord is Risen Today.” It’s words and the theology present in the words is fabulous. But, this year, I’ve been especially drawn to Brian Wren’s hymn “Christ is Alive.” Read these verses:
Christ is alive! Let Christians sing.
His cross stands empty to the sky.
Let streets and homes with praises ring.
His love in death shall never die.
Christ is alive! No longer bound
to distant years in Palestine,
he comes to claim the here and now
and dwell in every place and time.
Not throned afar, remotely high,
untouched, unmoved by human pains,
but daily, in the midst of life,
our Savior in the Godhead reigns.
In every insult, rift, and war,
where color, scorn, or wealth divide,
he suffers still, yet loves the more,
and lives, though ever crucified.
Christ is alive, and comes to bring
good news to this and every age,
till earth and all creation ring
with joy, with justice, love, and praise.
This year, in the midst of the war in Ukraine, in the midst of the pandemic, in the midst of a troubling week in the Scottsville/Esmont area, in the midst of the anniversary of the VA Tech shooting, I have needed this reminder that our resurrected Christ is also the suffering Christ who suffers with us in our pain. Christ is alive and brings us this good news of hope and love and the promise that the worst thing is not the last thing. But even with this hope, Christ still suffers with us in the midst of the difficult and painful places. God doesn’t abandon us in our darkest times. Instead, God loves us so much that God suffers with us and brings us this good news of hope and love. This is something to rejoice in indeed! Alleluia. Amen.