“It is not enough to celebrate Easter and say, ‘Christ is risen.’ It is useless to proclaim this unless at the same time we can say that we have also risen, that we have received something from heaven. We must feel appalled when the tremendous events that took place, the death and resurrection of Jesus, are proclaimed again and again and yet actually nothing happens with us. It has no effect.” -Christoph Friedrich Blumhardt, in Bread and Wine
The day after Easter, I am not sure what to do.
On Easter, I rise.
We go to church. We shout our alleluias, we sing “Christ the Lord Is Risen Today.” Afterwards, we feast. I cook a turkey for Easter dinner, my first ever, won in a trivia contest. (Don’t ask.) Josh and I watch basketball with some friends, eat turkey and potatoes cooked in cream and carrot cake, drink good beer and good wine.
And we go to bed, and then it’s back to life the way it was, before the Lenten disciplines, before weird lifestyle changes or diets or food given up. Christ is risen, and things are back to normal.
I read the quotation above this week and felt my heart ache. Easter is here, and what difference does it make, other than the fact that I’m eating bacon again?
And yet, in this year, between last Eastertide and this one, I’ve been here, writing. Sometimes sporadically (ahem, the last three months), sometimes regularly.
Last year, on that week of alleluia, I launched this blog as a home for my words, as a place to practice resurrection. I wrote about painting my toenails as a spiritual practice and about messy stories of community behind the pretty graduation pictures.
I wrote our journey to California and the grace from friends that followed us along the way. And, because I am a glutton for punishment, I wrote for 31 days about my journey toward healing, through anxiety and depression.
I am afraid, more often than not. Of being too honest or being too oblique. I am afraid that people will read these words and afraid that no one will. I am afraid that the writing is horrible, or, worse, that it is forgettable.
But something has happened with me, here. Writing is no longer a Big Huge Thing that involves a eating an entire bag of those smelly honey-mustard pretzels and having an existential crisis and a two-hour cry. Writing is what I do.
Over the past few months, I have begun to feel an ache. I have begun to hear a whisper. It’s time. It’s time to step out again. The whisper says what I know: that since I was a child, I have always wanted to write. And now is the time to do it.
It is time to step out again, this time a little farther. And so I am. In the next few weeks, the Great Fifty Days of Easter, I will be here, writing daily. And in the next few weeks, the site will be moving to its own domain (a.k.a. its own dot-com site, for non-techies like me). I am not quitting my jobs. I am not making major life changes, but I will be making time. Time to write for this blog and time to work on other writing projects. Time to be who I am, to do what I do, here.
“It is useless to proclaim this unless at the same time we can say that we have also risen.” I don’t know if I have risen yet. But I am rising. And I am writing the rising, one word at a time.