Editorial – A welcome time of rebirth

Published 6:05 pm Tuesday, April 4, 2023

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

Easter occurs, appropriately, in the spring, when even a non-Christian can find inspiration in signs of renewal all around us.

Flowers are back in bloom. Green leaves have reappeared on limbs recently bare. People have reemerged from their winter hibernation. Outdoor opportunities abound in Suffolk during the spring.

For Christians, Easter Sunday continues to be a perpetual reminder of hope, that no matter how heartbreaking the moment may seem, all is never lost.

Email newsletter signup

On Good Friday, Jesus’ followers thought that their world had come crashing down. The charismatic figure they had followed for the past three years and in whom they had put their hopes was dead. Before their very eyes, Jesus had been mocked, tormented and crucified like a common criminal.

Yet the disciples did not truly grasp what Jesus was about until Easter Sunday, when He rose from the dead. With His resurrection, they came to understand that His kingdom — and theirs — was not of this world but the next. And they came to see that out of great suffering can emerge immense joy. There could be no Easter Sunday without Good Friday.

It is this juxtaposition of misery and happiness that has braced Christians to endure war, natural disaster and personal tragedy for the last two millennia.

“No matter what the storm clouds bring, you can face your pain with courage and hope,” writes the inspirational author Max Lucado. “For two thousand years ago — six hours, one Friday — Christ firmly planted in bedrock three solid anchor points that we can all cling to. For the heart scarred with futility, that Friday holds purpose. For the life blackened with failure, that Friday holds forgiveness. And for the soul looking into the tunnel of death, that Friday holds deliverance.”

This weekend, as we flock to churches throughout Western Tidewater to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection, let us remember those who are suffering in our community, in our state and around the world. Let us pray for a change of heart in those who are consumed with death. Let us hope that peace will replace conflict, that the proverbial swords will be turned into plowshares.

As we learned on the first Easter Sunday, miracles do happen.