Alleluia is our story

Alleluia! Christ is risen!
The Lord is risen indeed. Alleluia!

This is the traditional Easter greeting of the Church. It is the core statement of what we believe. And you can tell a lot about us by that statement. You can see within it the new life that God breathes into his Son our Lord. You can see within it the abundant life that he intends for us. You can also see within it one of the core attributes of God—his mercy and forgiveness.

It is impossible to tell the Easter story without telling the story of Maundy Thursday and Good Friday. God came among us and showed us how to live in right relationship with him and each other. And we respond to God by blaming him for not behaving according to our standards, for not being the way we want him to be. And we condemn him for daring to be different than we are.

But the story of Easter is not that story. It is the story of a God who loved us so much, who valued being in relationship with us so much that he forgave us. For everything. And God reached out to us, creating that relationship when we could not do it ourselves. You can tell a lot about God by what God does. What Easter tells us is that God values being in relationship with us, God values giving us life, more than anything. That is why “Alleluia” is our song. That is what we mean when we say we are an Easter people. It is God’s model for us as well — we who were forgiven while we were yet in our sins are called to share that forgiveness with each other, most especially with those who wrong us.

Alleluia! Christ is risen!

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