Do you believe God can lift you to life?
When we’re broken, it’s sometimes hard to imagine that God can make us whole again. Yet, as Psalm 130 reminds us, God’s sole focus is on forgiveness and redemption, on healing that which is broken – and our faith stories tell us that God is not interested in breaking anything further. The prophet Ezekiel is chosen by God to call the people of Israel – languishing in exile – back to life as they once had known it: I will open your graves and have you rise from them… I will put my spirit in you that you may live, God says. It is a promise to lift the people from the death-like state of exile through the bond of covenant, a bond that will tie them once again to their God, making them whole, restoring them to life.
When Jesus sets Lazarus free from the bonds of death in John’s Gospel, he simultaneously urges all those who are watching to loose the knots in their own hearts that have consigned Lazarus to that death: Untie him, and let him go, Jesus says For they too must move with Jesus through death to life. Likewise, it is Jesus’ death and resurrection that make it possible for him to lift us from the depths of sin and despair to life in the Spirit. But we must, like Martha, profess our belief in Jesus’ power to do so: everyone who lives and believes in me will never die, Jesus tells her.
Our lives are a constant journey with Jesus, moving through his Passion, from death to life, drawing ever closer to our own life in him. If the Spirit of the one who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, Paul tells the Roman community, the one who raised Christ from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies also, through his Spirit dwelling in you. Do we believe God is able to lift us to life? If we are open to the power of the Spirit of God in our lives, we should have no doubts: Jesus is the resurrection and the life – the God who lifts us from our brokenness, making us whole, lifting us to life in Christ.
This post is based on Fr. Pat’s Scripture class.
Image source: Wordle
Image source: Wordle