I need resurrection every day. I need the Holy Spirit power that raised Jesus from the dead in me every day. In him I live, move, and have my being. It is no longer I that live, but Christ lives in me. And I’m glad.

This has been a year like no other in living memory. It has been challenging for us all, but I reflect personally on challenges I did not anticipate, and if I had, I might have been reluctant to turn the page on the calendar. Sadly, the lowest point was a desire that I’d never see another day. Taken to the lowest point again in my life-long struggle with mental health. Yet again, at the very bottom, are the arms of Christ – strong arms, mighty to save.

It’s all grace.

After our Sunday morning service on Facebook, I joined a Zoom with fellow Companions of the Northumbria Community to renew our new monastic vows, centred around AVAILABILITY and VULNERABILITY. That was special, but hard.

There is so much in me that still wants to retreat and put up the walls, but this is not the way we live. Being available and vulnerable when you’re still raw and healing is hard, but Christ is our example. In the pain of crucifixion, he spoke mercy and grace. Being available and vulnerable when you’re in the tomb seems impossible, but Christ wrestled the powers of darkness and came out fighting. Yes, availability and vulnerability is only possible with resurrection power.

None of us knows what is ahead. When we put our lives into God’s hands for him to bless and break, we join a story that is not our own. We are not in control.

There were two lines from our vow renewal in particular that spoke to me:

Let us embody your ready kindness in our day, for things will not be as they were before“, “Call out in me a willingness to love and serve,” and ‘teach me to dream again, to hope again, with my heart already in tune with Heaven.”

I’ve taken these sentences to my own Gethsemane this weekend. I’ve crucified stuff again. Taken up the cross. Sat in the tomb. Been raised again.

Turns out that Easter isn’t only a time in history past, but a reality in our day-to-day lives.

Every day is a walk to Emmaus, and his companionship makes our hearts burn within us once again. Praise God!