It feels like our fast paced life has suddenly come to a halt. Just a month back, every one of us was engaged with our daily life, work, travels, plans and schedules just to find out this month, that nothing seems to be working the way we were anticipating. The rapidly spreading coronavirus has made the whole world get reversed. And for most of us, it’s getting a bit challenging to adopt to this new normal life with all peace and ease. The lock downs, the social distancing and the precautions we need to take to avoid the spread of the virus feel a very hard task and mostly inconvenient with each passing day. All of us long to return to our normal lives as soon as possible.
It’s so much of an unknown season where none of us can predict what the future holds. The news channels and social media are filled with rising numbers of confirmed cases and deaths. There is still no vaccine available for the virus. The poor people of our country are suffering the most. Our kids are trapped between four walls. There are predictions of community spread, more deaths and more chaos we will face due to the effects of this virus in the coming days. It feels so much like we are standing in the in –between. In between the life which was moving smoothly before the pandemic hit and the life which we will have after the pandemic gets under control.
The predictable In –between will feel easy, thrilled and promising when we know with certainty what the future holds, when we know the better outcome that awaits. But how should we respond to the in – between which has got no known outcome, favorable possibilities or a slight glimpse of a healthy environment in future? How should we live in this season of turmoil where there is a big question mark regarding our health, our finances, the safety of our beloved ones and the well-being of the entire nation? How should we respond in this in –between season of uncertainty?………
Jesus’s disciples felt the same way after Jesus’s death. He was mocked, lashed, ripped of His clothes, crowned of thorns and nailed cruelly on the cross. Their Messiah was taken away from them. The miracle maker Himself was laying behind the closed tomb. The hope giver Himself was dead. There was grief all over Jerusalem because the one who came to save them was crucified. Weeping, uncertainties, disappointments and heartaches could be felt all over the place as Jesus was crucified.
“It is finished!” Then he bowed his head and gave up his spirit. John 19:30
They were in between the time of Jesus’s death and the day of His resurrection. Life felt measurable. Grief was crushing their heart, distress was filling their minds and no one knew what the future held. No one knew how to respond during this in between season. All they had was His promise of resurrection to cling on until they could see Him face to face.
“When they came together in Galilee, he said to them, “The Son of Man is going to be delivered into the hands of men. They will kill him, and on the third day he will be raised to life.” And the disciples were filled with grief”. Matthew 17:22-23
Still this was a very painful time for most of them as they couldn’t believe that He would be raised to life. They couldn’t see the life beyond His death. As they had no idea how the resurrection would take place. Probably their human minds couldn’t imagine a dead person raising up to life. They probably felt lonely and uncertain in this time of grief as Jesus laid in the tomb.
Yet the promise keeper, the miracle maker, the hope giver, the Savior of the world, rose fulfilling the promise He made with them. He had conquered the darkness of death and risen to life. Their Messiah appeared to them giving them a new hope and a promising future.
“Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him.” Mark 16:6
For us, Good Friday is just over and we wait for Easter Sunday to be celebrated. In our churches since our childhood, we know that we are to remember Christ’s passion & sacrifice on the day of Good Friday and to celebrate His resurrection on Easter Sunday. But no one tells us what should be done on Saturday – the in between season of grief & joy. No sermon is preached on how to survive the day between death and the resurrection.
The Saturday (the in –between season that we are in today) should be the hope day🙂
……..We hope for a better tomorrow as we know that the ultimate tomorrow, the hope of abundant life, healing and restoration is made possible by Jesus’s sacrifice on the Cross. We believe that God is in control of the world He created. We hope that He has plans for our future and the in –between season will not last forever. We hope that He will never forsake us in the valleys of death. We hope that light will surely shine through darkness. And when our hope is in His promises, His power and His sovereignty, it gives us mental and emotional strength to get through the in –between season amidst all the fears and uncertain situations around us.
So, things are challenging definitely, but let’s savor His hope and cling to His promise of resurrection; resurrection from the uncertainties, from fear, from this hard in –between season and from the deadly virus which is spreading over the world till we get to the other side – to our normal and smooth going life again, continually abiding in His grace…
“And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast”. 1 Peter 5:10