A Digital Refresh – April 9, 2020: When God Seems Distant

Mini-Yo-We

Today’s reflection is from Jez Bell.  Jez is the Director of Our Year-Round Programs, leading our internship program, and hosting groups throughout the year.

Today’s Reading: John 8:12-20

When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”

-John 8:12

This year Easter has got lost on me.

Normally I love Easter. I like the fact that we have Palm Sunday which for me is often a reminder that Easter is coming. In years past, I have tried to observe Lent and make those 40 days before Easter a spiritual commitment. This year amongst the craziness of what is happening in the world it feels very strange and Easter feels lost on me.

I have found some great comfort in watching devotions on a YouTube channel 24/7 prayer. I was encouraged as I watched a devotion on Easter Saturday. I have often skipped over the thoughts and feelings of people involved on the Saturday, in the Easter story. We go to church on Good Friday and again on Easter Sunday and often we enjoy the Saturday like any other Saturday. This year I feel more connected to the characters that we read about in the gospel accounts of Jesus’ crucifixion.

How were people feeling on that Saturday?

Mary the mother of Jesus had seen him killed in front of her. Seen her son suffer in pain, seen her son be mocked, watched as her son take His last breath. Mary was in a very dark place. Mary knew who her son was, she never doubted Him, she knew she could not have conceived a child as she was a virgin. She watched him grow up as a child, she saw him teach in the Synagogue at such a young age and inspire many leaders much older than Him. Mary knew her son Jesus was the Son of God. Yet Mary would have been left questioning God. Why? Why had this happened? It made no sense? How does it fit into Gods plan?

We are in a time of questioning as well.

Why is this virus impacting so many people? It makes no sense? How does this fit into Gods plan?

I am comforted by the words of Saint John of the Cross from the 16th century as he described Easter Saturday as “The Dark Night of the Soul”. This may not sound very comforting but as many of you have struggled through restless nights we know that the day will eventually come. That the light will arrive and bring hope and comfort that we need. Maybe Gods silence is not His absence but maybe it is another manifestation of His presence. Our questions in this time of craziness in the world are not questions of doubt but questions of Faith. Holy Saturday may not feel very Holy but that does not mean that God is not present.

I am simply reminded of Jesus’ words “I Am the Light of the world” Take some time today to just focus on Jesus’ words. Let His promise give you hope. Let His promise of light establish a deeper faith in Him.

Blessing,

Jez

Subscribe to get the Digital Refresh directly to your Email every day.

A Digital Refresh is a regular series for the staff at Mini-Yo-We.
When we gather together for worship and learn from God’s word we call it “Refresh.” Even though we aren’t at camp we can still gather together to share God’s word through a Digital Refresh.

For more resources check out our summer staff resource page.

If you would like to contribute reach out to pat@miniyowe.com.