Today’s Easter! The most important holy holiday for Christians that celebrates God’s miracle of the Resurrection, representing His eternal Love for all. It’s also the middle of Passover, which similarly acknowledges for the Jewish people G-d’s Love and active protecting intercession. Though Christian, I feel quite connected to the Jewish faith through very dear friends and close colleagues; and I’ve learned a lot, even celebrated several Passover seders. It was during one that I first heard a common joke about a theme threading their holidays, “They tried to kill us. We survived. Let’s eat.” Though no expert, from my outside the tribe limited knowledge and google exploration, there appears to be something to it. It’s an idea that’s inspired deeper thinking about my own personal Christianity, Easter and other holidays, and just day-to-day life.

Raised in my Catholic faith, I learned that Easter was God’s triumph over mankind’s fall from grace: we all messed things up so bad that Jesus had to come down and die as a payback for our sins, and in doing so, even if it was totally unfair, etc., He fixed everything, and we knew it worked by His Resurrection three days after. I don’t mean to sound flip or glib (anyone close knows I’m anything but when it comes to my faith and spirituality), but it’s always sat unsettled for me why it had to be this way, so seemingly transactional, such a rigid and stern “justice,” completely distorting that other image I was brought up with of a loving and merciful God. (Remember the parable of the Prodigal Son?) As a mom, quite frankly, that “sacrifice” logic to explain “Love” or “Mercy” makes no sense to me.

The joke about the Jewish holidays is fun and lighthearted, yet there’s a critical omission of another theme that I’ve found to underlie their holy days too – clearly the most important – G-d’s engaged presence and problem solving – the fact that in all of the House of Israel troubles, messes often created by stubborn hardheartedness, disobedience, lack of trust, or whatever … G-d still came, accompanied and walked with, and eventually, often despite themselves, steered them into the clear. Totally undeserving, and yet, Yahweh was always still there. (Just like a loving mom, I might add)

And yet … There lies the answer for this Jesus-loving mom’s heart… a simple substitution… “And yet,” for “that” … “We were so bad that Jesus had to come and die” just doesn’t work for me as a mom who will be there no matter how bad the mess or how stupid they are … But that simple switch offers a complete 180° shift (simple enough to not seem miraculous is how most miracles probably play out)… “We’re just so lost and yet, He came to be among and with us “… (and added bonus, even teach us how to live)… A lifetime conflict, semantics… and a simple update offering extreme mom-like patience and tolerance… a totally different, comforting, full-of-love insight to add into our Easter Joy,

And, taking religion out of it for those who don’t practice or buy in, and also those who may contain faith to a Saturday or Sunday liturgical hour, is there still insight to be gained from the stories, traditions, and beliefs passed down by generations for millennia about who or whatever, the underlying force or energy that’s keeping our universe going? Something more than the story or tradition behind the carefully planned seder or long church services … something Hopeful to incorporate practically within our day-to-day journey and struggles when we feel we’re flying solo?

Maybe that’s what Hope is, accepting that we simply can’t mess up enough. Religious or not, we could all use that beautiful pick-me-up.

Did you enjoy today’s post? You’ll love Naomi’s book,
Not to Spoil the Ending… but everything is going to be ok!

5 thoughts on “Co-Pilot

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