“Almost nothing that makes any real difference can be proved. I can prove the law of gravity by dropping a shoe out the window. I can prove that the world is round if I’m clever at that sort of thing, that the radio works, that light travels faster than sound. I cannot prove that life is better than death or love better than hate. I cannot prove the greatness of the great or the beauty of the beautiful. I cannot even prove my own free will… Faith can’t prove a damned thing. Or a blessed thing either.” - Frederick Buechner
On April 1st, Easter Sunday and April Fools Day will occur simultaneously – on the same day! The last time it happened was 1956, before this congregation (in any form) even existed! It’s a strange confluence of two radically different days—one, the heart of Christian hope; the other, a deep dive into white lies and petty pranks.
This coincidence is interesting to me in light of several recent conversations I’ve had with folks at Grace. Easter, it turns out, means a lot of things to a lot of people. For some, Easter means triumph—that in Jesus’ resurrection God is proved highest and mightiest, once and for all. For some, it means beauty—sunrises and spring flowers and lush green trees. For others, Easter means hope—that new life can come out of the driest, darkest places. And for still more, it calls forth enlightenment—a new consciousness, one that enables those who attain it to live an elevated existence above the broken, violent, impoverished ways that seem to otherwise plague this world in every corner.
I actually like all of these for different reasons. We could make a fairly sound theological case for any of them and, better yet, for all of them combined (and more!). These frames of triumph and beauty and hope and enlightenment hold the potential to point us to a Dream made possible in the wondrous story of Easter. We are inspired to believe that ultimately things will be made right, no matter how wrong they seem in any given moment.
The possibility is very real, when pondering the paschal mystery, that we might get tripped up on April-Fool’s-Day-kinds-ofquestions: Did it really happen just like we read? Did it really happen at all? Is this a trick? Am I being a sucker?
Truthfully, I fear that we might allow such cynicism to keep us from the wonder of things that can’t necessarily be proved, but could be believed and embraced as the Divine Dream for us and this whole world, to awaken with life and beauty and hope and enlightenment and…LOVE! If we can believe in the dream, then we can be part of making it come true.
I pray that we could come to this Easter with eyes wide in wonderful faith, and leave April Fool’s Day altogether, for another year.
Christ is risen! Alleluia! Alleluia!
The Rev. Scott Painter
I serve as the Vicar of Grace. A word from our English heritage in the Episcopal Church, "Vicar" means that I serve as the priest and pastor of this congregation.