“Why do you seek the Living among the dead?“
This question is at the heart of the Easter story. Setting aside for now all the technical and theological aspects inherent in the Passion story, the essence boils down to finding and assimilating and celebrating life. Easter focuses the attention on expectation, disappointment, hope, and the kind of certainty that is present in true faith.
At the end of this Year Of Death, where now will we find life? Has death overcome it? The disciples came to look for Life in a cemetery, and specifically, in a tomb. They were scolded. They had received enough instruction that they might have known better. But the reality of what they had seen, overcame the reality of what they could not yet see. Being certain of what their eyes and experience told them, they acted as they did. They came to do homage to a dead body.
It is thankful that their faith wasn’t the cause of God’s acting. Else, Jesus would still be buried behind that stone. Because they had none. No, they had been invited to believe in the Faith that God has in Himself to achieve what He achieves, with or without our believing. Their failure to give credit to what they had been told, more than to what they had seen, did not constrain God in the slightest.
But, it did cause them to look in the wrong place. And once there, this reliance upon their own ability to see caused them not to recognize Life in the form of a gardener. I guess if we must see something in order to believe it, then even when it is presented to the eyes, we won’t recognize it for what it is. Where have you been looking for life? What do you have to see to know if you’ve found it?
A gardener knows the secret to Life is patience. He is not a day-trader. He knows that there is much more going on beneath the surface than what can be seen above it. He knows better than to trust his eyes for determining truth.