"He stood in their midst" Lk 24:36

Posted by Christine Nusse on Apr 14, 2007 | Categories: Seasons of the Spirit

I wonder what I would expect and ask from someone who, I would believe, had just risen from the dead. “What happened after you died?” That is the big question isn’t it? What about the tunnel, the light?
In the resurrection stories, the disciples don’t ask anything. They are just so full of grief they don’t even recognize him. Then, they are scared, excited, in fact so full of emotions that they know not what to say.
I read to see if Jesus talked about the great “beyond”. Not a word. One might draw from it that those are just stories imagined by the first christians. If it was indeed the case, I bet they would have given us a beautidul rendition of Paradise. As it was, not a clue.
On the contrary, Jesus’ presence is very much in the “here and now” of the people he appeared to, Marie’s, the Emmaus discipless, the eleven’s.. He becomes at once present to their emotions and, at the same time in the midst of their physical conditions that particular moment. Marie is sad, looking for help through the garden. On the road to Emmaus, the two disciples are depressed, tired and hungry. The eleven are scared, behind locked doors and having dinner. Jesus suddenly is there, with them. He acknowledges their emotions and feelings, and shares in their present moment by eating with them. It is all very low key, very simple and quite anti-climatic.
As for the teaching, Jesus goes back to what they had already received and learned but could not grasp and somehow this time they seem to understand, at last, and from within.
I love those resurrection gospels! And yet I fail to expect Jesus’ risen presence, not as an answer to my lofty prayers but in the here and now of my mundane life, in my emotions, work, relationships, in the present moment.

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