Verses for The Great Fifty Days
Day 20 in Easter
You are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s own people, in order that you may proclaim the mighty acts of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.
The emotional power of a wedding lies in the idea of being chosen. Out of all the others in the world, this person has chosen me. It makes us all feel like kings and queens. Special. Chosen. Beloved. Precious in the eyes of another. It is heady, transformative stuff, hard to believe and impossible to resist, full of hope and anticipation.
Religious life involves this same powerful ecstasy: “You are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation.” “For God so loved the world…” “See what love the Father has given us…” “Nothing shall ever separate us from the love of God…” It is heady transformative stuff. New beginning. New life.
The next sentence, however, is hard to write. It can’t start with “But.” It ought not do anything to diminish the wonder, mystery and joy of knowing we are loved. Yet there is more to be said. There is a marriage to follow the wedding. There is a life to be lived. A love to be lived. A daily “choosing” of the other – whether in making dinner or making the bed.
And there is a world to be served. Love pushes outward. It presses to be shared. By it’s very nature it overflows. Others are inevitably drawn into the joy.
Such is the nature of God’s love, too: “You are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s own people, in order that you may proclaim the mighty acts of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.”
We shouldn’t think too narrowly about what it means to proclaim the wonder of God. God’s mighty acts are mighty acts of faithfulness and love, justice and mercy, healing and deliverance, forgiveness and rebirth. It pushes outward. It presses to be shared. Love must be lived. The dance must be danced. The wonder must be proclaimed. The grave is empty.