Usually I have no problem letting the tears come out. But this year, the tears have been sitting on the edge, welling up inside of me. I wanted so desperately for them to come out. Little did I know how much I needed the holiness of the triduum (the three days leading up to Easter).
I have needed to sit at the foot of the cross. I have needed to cry holy tears at that cross. I have needed to sit in the liminal space of Holy Saturday. I don’t know about you friends, but the world feels like Holy Saturday every day right now. We are stuck between the reality of despair and hope. We are continually crying out “How long, oh Lord?!” Yet the answer is unanswered. We do not know how long this night will last.
After leading worship on Maundy Thursday, I came home and sat down on my couch. I pulled up YouTube and began watching the beauty of the Triduum Project unfold. There was vulnerability shared in storytelling. There was bread baking. There were people who invited us in to sit with them at their family table. There was prayer. There was laughter and tears. There was music of all shapes and sizes. There was simply so much holiness.
As I have broke bread and wine and held vigil with all of these holy people, the tears have finally let loss. I am crying for the reality and pain of our world. I am crying that we murdered love as our Lord was crucified and hung on a tree. I am crying as we sit in the midst of an eternal Lent and Holy Saturday. I am crying and marked by the cross of Christ. I am crying tears that will not stop. Tears that remind me that the sun is going down but tomorrow the sun will rise again.
This Easter vigil has been one of the holiest things I’ve ever experienced. Gathered from all ends of the earth, I have been reminded that the church is still very much alive. I have seen the beauty of the body of Christ coming together as we walk to the empty tomb. I know more and more that I am not a lone and we are in this together.
In a few hours, the vigil will end and we will gather to raise a glass for Jesus; for the one who died for each of us. And as we raise our glasses, the tears will come again. But this time, they will come knowing that morning will come again. We just don’t know how long this morning will be. The tears will be a sign of healing. The tears will be in thankfulness and hope. A hope that was embodied over three days in a holy online experience that the church has needed in this time and place.
Tonight, the tears are rolling freely down my face! And I am so grateful!