Follow Me?

Hither ye behind me! Yep; that’s what Jesus said. Modern translations simply say, “Come follow me.” These words of Jesus were an imperative call to present and continuous action. One Greek Grammar says that Jesus was calling for long-term commitment; to habits suited to such a commitment; a commitment that would cultivate virtue leading to a certain lifestyle. Ignatius, working with this big kingdom idea, taught us to follow Jesus by finding God in all things. He and other spiritual masters knew that this meant we had to engage in practices of noticing, reflecting and discerning; learning to be steadily conscious of God, self and others.  Frank Laubach (Letters by a Modern Mystic), stands in this tradition. He writes that submission is the first and last duty of man; that we are learning to respond to God as a violin responds to the bow of the master.  He says this begins with listening, moves to surrender and finds it best fruit in a determined, resolved will to act with God. The question mark we’ve put at the end of Jesus’ imperative is both invitation and call to decisive action to take serious Jesus’ command to come follow me—and in so doing to find, in Laubach’s words, that every day is tingling with the joy of glorious discovery.

– Todd Hunter​

Easter Sunday, April 20

Readings: Acts 10:34-43; Matthew 28:1-10

Christ is risen! Christ is risen, indeed!

Do not abandon yourselves to despair. We are the Easter people and hallelujah is our song. ― Pope John Paul II

Easter changes everything! Why? Christians are in Christ. What is true of him will be true of us. On Easter we affirm not merely, Christ is risen, but I shall rise. This is the confidence that fuels martyrs. It is the poise that allows an exhausted mom to get the last child in bed with kindness and love. Easter provides the certainty that allows those who find life challenging to keep walking in faith while they wait for a spouse to marry, a new job, to finish that last class before graduation, or to anticipate a friendship to be reconciled. Easter-faith is both backbone and joy for the journey—it changes everything!

Holy Saturday, April 19

Readings: John 19:38-42; Galatians 5:1; 2 Corinthians 6:11-13; Matthew 16:18

Begin with the above centering prayer, by Peter Traben Haas, as you reflectively read today’s Scriptures.

Most have an awareness of Good Friday and everyone knows about Easter. But what happened between those two days? How does the church celebrate that? What is holy about Holy Saturday? Holy Saturday is the day that spiritually unifies and stitches together the cross and resurrection. Christians have always set aside this day for prayer and meditation. The public service of the church is very simple and stripped-down to a few readings and prayers. We contemplate both the Passion of Christ and the reaction of his first friends. How might they have felt to see their dreams crushed by his brutal death on the cross? As you imaginatively enter into this scene of dark despair, bring to God any remaining darkness you discovered in Lent. As you do, receive the awareness that, like Jesus in the dark tomb, you too are held in the Father’s love—our Father who is already always there.

———— See Good Friday Reflection Below ————