A Resurrection Worldview
Rooting Our Hope in Redemption
Before Easter, the first-grade catechist I assisted asked our class if they knew what the Resurrection meant. One boy answered that it meant Jesus rose from the dead—and he had heard the story so many times by now that he was beginning to be bored of it.
The answer brought a laugh and a deeper explanation from the catechist, but in reality, any of us can feel as that little boy did. We celebrated Christ’s Resurrection for forty days. It is good to question how that changed us, if at all.
For we may realize that Christ rose from the dead, and we still suffer heartbreak, loss, fear, and hunger. Christ rose from the dead, and we still sin and are harmed by others’ sins. Redemption may be won, but we may ask where that redemption is for us. It may be that for all the graces of the Sacraments found in the Church, we remain in our darkness, struggles, and sins. For all the goodness in the world, the darkness of these times seems to spread further.
Yet, the Resurrection did not eliminate all evil from the world. Rather, the Resurrection demonstrated that God can bring the greatest good out of the greatest evil.
Out of the most wicked and violent injustice ever done to a person, to an innocent, to God Himself, He opened the gates of heaven, removed our sin, and unleashed a torrent of grace upon the world through the birth of His Church. God has proved to us that He can write straight with the most crooked of lines.
This is not a one-time event. The historical event of the Resurrection itself may be, but the pattern is engraved in time now, rippling outward. Crucifixion and Resurrection are the rhythm of the Christian’s life. Yet, they are not dualistic forces, struggling for ultimate sovereignty. No, the Resurrection proved that goodness has the last word.
This is a lesson Easter teaches us long past the Paschal season. It is not just theoretical, but affects our actions. Can we look at our enemies, at those hurting the world, perhaps even at ourselves when our sins get the best of us, and say, “You meant evil against me; but God meant it for good” (Gen 50: 20)? Can we say that despite all that has been done to us, “In everything God works for good with those who love him” (Rom 8:28)?
Suffering remains. Sin remains. But there is a great force sweeping through the world because of the Resurrection even to this day, this moment. Suffering becomes redemptive, purgative, unable to separate us from our greatest good, and with grace a means to unite us more closely to our Savior. Sin is a crack through which grace flows into our souls if we only let it.
Christ has invited us to cooperate with this great work in our own lives: by extending forgiveness to others, by trusting Him in our suffering, by praising Him in all things, knowing that He can use them all for good.
Yet, we do not always see goodness coming from evil. A loved one dies without making peace with God despite our best efforts to convert them. Innocents are wounded and killed. A mistake of ours has lasting consequences we cannot undo.
Despite these realities, our call remains the same: the invitation to view the world through the lens of the Resurrection. We walk by faith and not by sight (2 Cor 5:7), surrendering ourselves again to the God who can bring good out of evil in ways we cannot comprehend this side of heaven. Such a faith requires grace; it is impossible through our own efforts, for faith is a supernatural virtue born in our lives through the Holy Spirit.
Thus, the season of Easter served as a reminder and strengthener of our faith, that any evil in our lives can, in the hands of God, be redeemed for good. This certainty blossoms into hope. We can expect good things from God, even when all appears dark and lost. We can wait with expectation for the redemption of our circumstances, whether or not we understand them in this life. The words of Psalm 34 can resonate joyfully in our hearts, “Many are the afflictions of the righteous; but the Lord delivers him out of them all,” for He can redeem all things.