Third Sunday of Easter
Christ the Wounded One
“As I was growing up, it seemed to me that Jesus’ feet never touched the ground,” a friend said to me. That’s the Jesus many of us imagine.
That is not the Jesus of Easter. “Look at my hands and my feet; see that it is I myself” (Luke 24:39). The disciples know it is Jesus because he still bears the wounds of crucifixion. Those wounds tell us that forgiveness, healing the wounds of human sin, is difficult and costly—even for God. Jesus in his ministry and on the cross is God personally taking on the result of human sin, the mess we have made by turning our backs on God and going our own way.
Easter, the story of the risen Jesus, tells us that human sin does not have the last word.
“Our Lamb has conquered; let us follow him.” How do we do that? One way is to be wounded, like Jesus; to meet the sins of the world, as Jesus did; to meet the wounded of the world, as Jesus did. Jesus invites us to help to heal the wounds of the world, of human self-centeredness and sin, by showing and living a different way.
One way I seek to do this is by daily praying for those who have wronged me, and wishing them the best; by praying for those with whom I disagree or for any reason I consider my enemies; by praying that I do not try to get even with those who have wounded me.
A psychologist friend gives workshops on responding to trauma with alternatives to anger and revenge. A retired friend talks to his Muslim neighbors. A teacher looks for ways to help the families of her students. Moravians work alongside people in need in Winston-Salem and in Milwaukee and in Bethlehem. In many different ways I see followers of Jesus getting closer to the wounds of the world.
Where is God inviting you to be?
Hermann Weinlick, retired pastor
Minneapolis, Minnesota, The Moravian Church