By Sara Kohl
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. ~Romans 6:23
My husband and I taught our second-grade religious education class a few days after they received their first Holy Communion. Oddly, or perhaps timely, the curriculum asked us to teach Jesus’s passion and death on the Cross. I talked to them about the consequences of our sins, but as I did so, their faces changed to a seriousness I hadn’t witnessed from them before. Though their response was appropriate, as I looked between their faces, my heart swelled. I eagerly began to share with them the proclamation of the Kingdom of God, that is, the new life we have received through His Passion.
The Proclamation of Life
The response of the second graders reminded me of Pope Francis’s Homily on the Easter 2021 Vigil, where he discusses the experience of the women who came to anoint Christ’s body at the tomb. “They went to mourn the dead; instead they heard a proclamation of life.” Pope Francis continues that when they came to the empty tomb, “[the women] were filled with trembling, fear and amazement. Amazement. A fear mingled with joy that took their hearts by surprise when they saw the great stone before the tomb rolled away.”
A Fear Mingled with Joy.
Do I not still respond this way when I ponder Christ’s life? When I approach the confessional? When, I ask, what He wants to make of my life instead of what I grasp to make of it?
I pray today that in your work, in your rest, or in whatever today brings, that your trembling can turn to amazement as you contemplate His continual presence in your life—taking your heart by surprise like the women at the empty tomb.
Lord, let all you do, in and around me today, leave me in awe.
May what I see during this day remain with me, deep within my heart, every day to come.
Call to Action
Consider one way you can proclaim life to others and share the joy of the Easter season.
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