Do you ever feel like the weather is messing with you? I certainly do. As I look outside right now, it’s morning, the sun is shining, I see birds fluttering around and it looks warm outside. But it isn’t. When I stepped outside this morning, it was cold, crisp and still smelled like the dead of winter. For a fleeting moment, I lost hope, I had been tricked. How could it possibly still feel like winter outside? Where is the joy of spring?
I imagine, as we pass through Holy Week, that the disciples also felt that way, like their promises of a Messiah were for nothing. I wonder if they felt winter in their hearts. No hope, a sense of despair and everything they thought was true seemed to be untrue.
We’ve got 2000+ years of hindsight to tell us that the disciples were wrong, they just needed to give it a couple of days. We know the disciples had a big surprise coming: Jesus would return to them, his body and spirit resurrected from the grave!
We see the signs of hope that Jesus gives us through his teachings, parables and responses. But it’s easy to get caught up in the moment and only look at the now, to stop seeing hope.
I believe that the disciples’ despair helped prepare them for the resurrected Jesus. Their fear for their safety led to Jesus miraculously appearing, even through the locked door. Jesus even allowed a disciple to feel and touch his wounds. They knew he had died on the cross, but after seeing and touching Jesus, they knew he was alive.
As spring will one day arrive (by temperature, in addition to the calendar), I know what the disciples didn’t. I use that hindsight to my advantage: that this period of death and despair are preparing my heart for the joy of new life.