We continue in the season of Easter, almost halfway through with it now. Each week in church we read stories about the resurrection appearances of Jesus to his disciples during that period between resurrection and ascension. One week Jesus is walking through walls into locked rooms to appear to his fearful followers. Another week Jesus is eating breakfast with them on the beach, asking for fish and eating it in front of them. What kind of resurrected Jesus is he? How can he be resurrected from the dead, changed so so his body can go through walls but also able to eat food? Did he had a digestive system in a body that allowed passing through objects or was the food just absorbed into his new body? We will never know the answer to these and thousands of other questions about Jesus in his resurrected state. We call this sort of thing a "mystery."
Resurrection continues to happen daily to many people. Each time someone dies, they are changed from the human being we knew and loved to a spiritual being with a new body that we cannot see with human eyes. We have no idea what it looks like or how it works. All we know is that when it happens to us, we will find out what happens.
Last week's Epistle reading from I John said, "Beloved, we are God's children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed. What we do know is this: when he is revealed, we will be like him, for we will see his as he is." (I John 3:2) Even the writer of the Epistle had no clue as to what lay beyond this life. He just said that he believed that we would be like him, for we would see him as he is.
So, does that mean that my sister who died over 10 years ago can walk through walls and eat fish if it is on the heavenly menu one day? I do not know the answer to that one either. I guess there could be walls in the place where she resides now and perhaps fish could be served as a welcome change from angel food cake or manna. She has never returned to tell me what it is like where she is but I am hoping she is in a good place and is happy where she is.
I have many questions about what lies beyond this life. I have no answers, however. I guess that is what faith and trust are about. Trusting God to care for us in this life and beyond this life is one of the basic rudiments of the Christian faith. Jesus talked about it all the time. He said that God would take care of us just like God takes care of the flowers of the field (which are really beautiful in Texas right now) and the birds of the air (who sing so beautifully each day) and if God could care for them, couldn't God also care for us? Trust....that is the element that connects the faith to what is needed daily and for the future.
I love life and living and I am in no hurry to go anywhere else but earth. However, I trust God to guide me as I walk the planet and when the day comes to depart this life, I trust God to lead me to the place where God would have me go and that place will be one that will be pleasant and peaceful and perpetual. If I get to walk through a wall now and then and enjoy a fish dinner with others, that would be an added bonus. Just being in the presence of God will be sufficient, though, because God is Love.