His name is Jesus.
He is the One
who opened a door
that had been locked
since the death of the first man
He is the One
who has beaten the King of Death
And everything is now different
the result of the Resurrection
A new creation has begun
A new chapter in history has opened
~Revised from Miracles by C.S. Lewis
Resurrection; a promise revealed to believers, by Jesus, of a transformation into a new likeness, after death, for all of eternity. But this promise was not only redeemable after death. After the resurrection of Jesus, we find in the Scriptures, stories of a number of believers who had died, and been raised back to a physical life. And at this time, in Church history, resurrection was part of the log of the faithful, and how they proved God.
From a vantage point of two thousand years later, we can see revealed the prospect of something else emerging. Miracles of seeing loved ones resurrected back to life from death, began to cease. Instead of seeing the dead brought back to life, believers began experiencing, what was considered, higher reaches of faith – where God seemed absent or distant. The previous miracles that brought delivery from persecution, ended. And in place of stories about healing and resurrection, they were now about affliction and persecution: John the Baptist, was beheaded. James, was killed by Herod Agrippa. The Virgin Mary, endured the horror of her Son’s torture, and no legion of angels intervened. St. Paul, who possessed the ability to heal others, was not able to heal himself.
Upon reading the unfolding events of miracles in the beginning time frames, we are tempted to question God’s economy. But, if we look closely, we see that there is no slippage with God. Nothing simply disappears. No sparrow falls without God’s knowing. No hair on anyones’ head is without its number.
But as humans, we are tempted to believe that all of our offerings of prayer, vigil, fastings and sacraments offered up, have apparently been lost, vanished without a trace. We tend to believe nothing has happened.This is a place where the angle of vision from which we are speaking, may need a correction.
This is a place where it is important to remind ourselves that in the Biblical picture of things, the story is allowed to finish. Like Lazarus’ household at Bethany and the two en route to Emmaus, it is the whole story that must be allowed to finish. And this is exactly what the faithful have been watching for since the beginning of time. In the face of suffering, endurance, loss, waiting and even death, it is the hope of redemption that has kept the spirits of the faithful from flagging down through the millenia. And all the stories of wandering, wearing goatskins and sheepskins as well as the One Big Story, of the whole creation, moaning and groaning – are all moving toward a finish of glory. Perhaps we can understand that events are amounting to a redoing of all that has gone wrong, a remaking of all that is ruined, and a finding what was lost, ultimately revealing a blaze of joy and splendor.
And of course, we beg to ask the question; “Where is all that has been lost?”
But maybe all that we thought was lost … wasn’t. Perhaps we may realize in eternity the great treasury kept by God to be opened on that Day. Or perhaps we may see how death and prayers and tears and fasts may be breath-takingly revealed for all of the faithful, angels, archangels, kings and widows and prophets … like gems on display.
Oh, let us not speak of things being lost. Let us say they are hidden – received and accepted, taken into the secrets of divine mysteries, to be transformed and multiplied, like all that we offer to the Holy; our loaves and fishes, our mites, our bread and wine, that will given back to us, and the one for whom we kept vigil, in the presence of a host of angels, in a glory unimaginable to you in the vigils you keep, but yet are like gold wings to the worm in a chrysallis. I believe we would call it … miracles of redemption.
Miracles are a retelling in small letters
of the very same story
which is written across the whole world
In letters too large
for some of us to see
~C. S. Lewis
Wishing you all the blessings of the Miracle of Easter.
The post above is adapted from The Night is Far Spent , A Treausury of Thomas Howard. Ignatius Press. 2007
The picture with art work is by Paulette Jackson