Our teacher, our master, our hope.
How can this be? We are angry. We are pleading with God – God far from us. We cannot see the next step.
The one who betrayed him is gone as well, along with any answers, or justice, or redemption we might wrest from him.
Some will wait together, uncertain for what, perhaps only because we can bear it better.
Some will take the long road home, treading a safe distance from their defeat with their many steps, treading a safe distance from their grief with their many words.
Some will busy themselves away from those who remind them of what they’ve lost.
Some will plan their return to normalcy, to what they know best. To what they do well. To outcomes over which they feel some control.
Some, perhaps overly courageous, perhaps overly faithful, will go back to to the tomb. Back to ground zero. To see what is left, repair what they can, to keep the routines and rituals that will help them feel they did what they could to be friends to the end.
Maybe they will be unable to move the stone.
Maybe the guards will send them away. Or worse.
Maybe it will be more than they can bear. Maybe they will turn back before they have to fully confront what has happened to him and to us; to God?
Perhaps that is the best we can do, to sustain love, to put our hands to merciful work, though nothing lasts. Perhaps all we can do today, and tomorrow, is love as we can; trust God as we can. Perhaps we will find enough strength for the trouble of the day we are in.
Perhaps today is in God’s hands. Maybe even yesterday. The mustard seed of today’s trust will need time to reach that far.
Perhaps tomorrow is, as well.
A Song of Ascents.
Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord.
Lord, hear my voice!
Let your ears be attentive
to the voice of my supplications!
If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities,
Lord, who could stand?
But there is forgiveness with you,
so that you may be revered.
I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,
and in his word I hope;
my soul waits for the Lord
more than those who watch for the morning,
more than those who watch for the morning.
O Israel, hope in the Lord!
For with the Lord there is steadfast love,
and with him is great power to redeem.
It is he who will redeem Israel
from all its iniquities.