We don't understand many of the machines we have in our house.
We have all kinds of power at our fingertips and we haven't a clue
about how most of it works. Our microwave oven has settings for
casseroles and pastry on high, medium and low, but we seldom use
most of those fancy settings.
In fact, the new thermostat we had installed last fall seems to
have a mind of its own, often surprising us with automatic
temperatures we weren't expecting. We do know how to slide a DVD
in, watch it and then return it to the library or the only
remaining video rental store in town. No Netflix for us. With a
little practice, perhaps we could learn how to download music and
movies or upload photos and send them on Facebook to thousands of
strangers around the world.
No matter where we turn, we are surrounded by a multitude of
possibilities offered by inventions no one could have imagined 50
years ago. Why don't we make use of them? As the kids say, "We
won't even go there." We are comfortable sitting in the middle of
our modern wizardry and, since we do own all this stuff, we tell
ourselves we are as up-to-date as the next person.
After all, if we really needed to use something, we'd either
figure out how to make it work or put in a frantic call to one of
the grandkids. Never mind technology. In the dead of winter, we had
too many good books to read and, now that spring is here, we will
be hanging out at garden centers. Meanwhile, we are content living
in a house full of idle possibilities.
As we enter the Easter season, we realize we sometimes treat our
faith like a modern device, acknowledging its power, but letting it
sit unused. When we read through the Acts of the Apostles, it is
evident that early Christians tapped into an awesome, sometimes
even dangerous, force that changed lives and could make room for
the seemingly impossible to happen.
Easter challenges us in ways not so different from the early
Christians. In spite of modern changes in our physical
circumstances, the human spirit remains the same. Humanity
continues to struggle with dishonesty, anger, greed, doubt and
fear. Anything that polluted human hearts in Christ's time still
thrives today. The need for a different kind of power is greater
The Resurrection opened the door for us to the same
life-transforming power God gave to those early Christians. The
Holy Spirit waits to be invited into our lives, offering us an
opportunity to be transformed into the kind of love that will bring
a new dawn on earth. As Easter people, the question is: will we use
our gifts, or let them gather dust while we surround ourselves
instead with idle symbols of our modern lifestyle?
Easter offers us an invitation to lean into the power we have
been given. To unleash the power of Love in our world, perhaps all
Christians really need to do is approach faith with the same fervor
we see in the younger generation's devotion to modern