by Jeremy Langill
When I was asked to pick a couple of dates to contribute to this Lenten Meditation series, I intentionally chose one at the very beginning of Lent and one as close to Easter as possible. If you recall from my post way back when Lent began, I was really struck by how deeply disconnected I felt from the Ash Wednesday service — its dismal retelling of that old and well-worn narrative (you know, the one about a wrathful God just waiting, almost anxiously it seems, to cast judgment upon me for my many sins and inequities) ended up putting me in a fairly ambivalent mood towards the whole Lenten season. I couldn’t help but wonder what Easter would look like this year for me.
I’ll confess, it ended up being pretty hard to get into a Lenten groove. I didn’t really give anything up, and I can’t recall feeling differently about church or Jesus or faith throughout the week or on Sundays. As Easter has gotten closer and closer, I’ve really begun to worry if it would mean anything at all to me.
Then came Tenebrae — I sometimes forget how much I appreciate this service, and how — apart from the Great Vigil on Saturday night — it’s definitely my favorite service to attend during Holy Week. The music is sublime and the readings are deep and moving. Much of the scripture that is read are Psalms, and for whatever reason, I found myself gripped by their emotional power. I love many of the Psalms because they tell the story, in magnificently poetic terms, of our struggle with faith and God — a struggle that has been real for me these past forty days.
And so here I am, Holy Saturday, waiting to see the resurrected Jesus — waiting to see (in the midst of my own internal struggle with Lent this past season) how the resurrected Jesus will appear in my own life and work — waiting and wondering, much like the disciples and countless Christians before me, how this new narrative of resurrected living will play out in the days and months ahead.