The Frontiers of Belief

3 So Peter and the other disciple went out and came to the tomb.[1] Jn 20:3

All we know initially is that Peter, the leader, and the other disciple who is unnamed but who is so firm in Jesus love that this is the name he goes by,…these two hearing Mary’s tale, “They have taken the Lord from the tomb, and we don’t know where they put him,” have been told a number of alleged facts:

  • The tomb has been tampered with;
  • the body is gone;
  • the unknown “They” seem to have done it.
  • the location of the body is unknown
  • but it is presumed that the body still exists somewhere, i.e. there is no inkling that the body is no longer just a body, but that Jesus is alive, He has been resurrected.

On the basis of this story, they, presumably want to see for themselves.  Thus they

  • go out and
  • come to the tomb.

Each day at dawn I follow Peter and John out.  I have heard the facts at least 69 times, realized them myriads of times more.  Empty tomb, body gone, the unknown “they,” location unknown, but do I still not believe He is alive, is with me always, is in the Eucharist, is in every person I meet, is in me?  Do I go out incredulous or believing, one of the faithful or one of the unfaithful, blessed because I have not seen but believed or standing by my sinful self.  The tomb isn’t going anywhere, it is always there, witnessing against me or for me, presenting me with the opportunity to expand my reality to what is and not limit myself to what my senses can register.

It is obvious, even to the most callous atheist, that all cross that threshold wander about in the unseen, the unverified, the other, to some degree.  We believe in the future, that we will be breathing and alive for the next minute…though there is nothing to confirm this.  We believe that when we flick the switch, this power we call electricity will be released and manifest itself in light, in heat, in a new and different reality.  We believe that if we plant a seed, tend it, water it, that it will come to life, release its potentiality, become what it was meant to be.  We believe that the seemingly hard, “impenetrable” surface of this desk is actually made up of atoms which, though clustered together to the naked senses, have vast spaces between them.  We believe that there is meaning to the words we speak, to the virtues and vices we describe.  We believe that there is cause and effect, there is relationship, there is “isness” which we witness and define as being, as existence.

Here we come to a frontier in the realm of belief, and many have closed their minds and hearts to reality beyond this point.  I have come to the tomb again today.  Thanks be to God, He has given me the eyes of faith to see reality beyond what the senses or even the mind can reach.  I pray for the grace to live in the company of angels and saints, to talk to You, God, my Father, to You, Jesus, my risen Lord and Savior, to You, Holy Spirit, the oft forgotten actor who enables me to see.  In thanksgiving and adoration, I worship You, Holy Trinity, God of power and might, sing Holy, Holy, Holy…and am content.  Amen.  Alleluia!!!

[1] Scripture texts in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Washington, D.C. and are used by permission of the copyright owner. All Rights Reserved. No part of the New American Bible may be reproduced in any form without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

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