Holy Week is arguably the most important week in the liturgical year. We start our week with crowds shouting Hosanna and waving palm branches with eagerness celebrating the entrance of Jesus Christ into the holy city of Jerusalem. We witness him wash the feet of his disciples on Thursday and share a meal with them. On Friday, he is killed and buried and there’s an earthquake and the dead arise the veil gets torn (a lot happens on Friday). Then on Saturday there is silence. That’s right, the Gospel writers don’t even bother writing about Holy Saturday, that’s how little they value it. I’m willing to fight for Holy Saturday.
Holy Saturday is where we are today.
Yes, Jesus has risen, sin has lost its power and death has lost its sting. But we are not living in a world that embraces that reality. We live in a world where Indiana can sin against its minority population and disguise it as “religious freedom,” where a Duke student hangs up a noose before James Cone comes to speak there, where unarmed minorities are slain every other day by law enforcement that gets off with no repercussions, where Methodist ministers can preach hate and bigotry from the pulpit but are punished for serving their LGBT members without discrimination. We are not living in a resurrection world. We are waiting in the pregnant day that is Holy Saturday, waiting for the daybreak of Sunday when Christ shall come with shouts of acclimation.
We are waiting for God to birth a new reality for our world.
The pregnancy of Holy Saturday is one that lasts longer than nine months. The Spirit is preparing us for the delivery, but we are perpetually waiting.
We are waiting for Easter to come for our people who are seeking ordination in a denomination that can reject those whom God has called because of whom they love or how they express their gender.
We are waiting for Easter for the families of Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Tamir Rice, Aiyana Stanley Jones, Trayvon Martin, Renisha McBride, Rekia Boyd, Jessica “Jessie” Hernandez, Jeffery Towe. We are waiting for the dead in Christ to rise again.
We are waiting for Easter for women who are abused economically, with unfair wages, physically by loved ones and strangers, sexually, emotionally. We are waiting for Easter for men trapped in patriarchal mindsets, trapped in the sin of pride and self-deprecation, men who also face abuse.
We are waiting for Easter for LGBT youth, who hide in the closet for fear of being rejected or abused physically, for those who are on the street because of their family failing to live into the love of God’s community, for those who battle depression and thoughts of suicide, for those who fear for their lives as they face bullies daily.
We are waiting for Easter for a world stripped of its natural resources at an unprecedented and uncontrolled rate.
We are waiting for Easter for those with disabilities who are kept out of churches using “religious exemptions” for the ADA, those whom are told they aren’t “healed” because they lack faith, for those whom sit in churches and hear stories of healing that harm them.
We are waiting for Easter. We are waiting in the pregnant day that is Holy Saturday. We are waiting for God to birth a reign of justice in the world.
We are in this day, called by the Holy Spirit, led by our brother Jesus to the glory of God. We are midwives called to prepare the Mother for the painful process that is about to occur, called to aid her as she delivers, called to catch the child she gives birth to, and we are called to present that which She has birthed to the world.
This Holy Saturday, let us set our hands to aid the One who made all things in birthing something new.
Let us remember our call, let remember who we are in Christ. Let us be the body of Christ for the world. Let us sit in the silence of Holy Saturday, while also preparing for the screams of new life that will come in the morning.
- Saturday, March 26 – A Season of Becoming Lenten Devotional - March 27, 2016
- Tamir Rice and the other holy innocents - December 29, 2015
- Where the leaves of the trees can heal the nations – a review of Gather at the River - August 13, 2015