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Living Easter

By Father Woods

As we make our way through the Easter Season, we might ask ourselves how we can really live the new life Jesus invites us into through His Resurrection.  The Easter mystery should light a fire under us so that we want to live our faith to the fullest – to be transformed out of a life of materialism, drudgery, sickness and sadness.  St. Paul in his epistle to the Colossians paints a vivid picture of what the Christian life should look like.  Even though we’ve heard the words proclaimed at Mass on countless occasions, the Easter Season is the perfect time to slowly read and reflect on St. Paul’s words…and receive it as a roadmap to Christian living now and eternal life to come.

Since you have been raised up in company with Christ, set your heart on what pertains to higher realms where Christ is seated at God’s right hand.  Be intent on things above rather than things of earth.  After all, you have died!  Your life is hidden now with Christ in God.  When Christ our life appears, then you shall appear with him in glory.

Put to death whatever in your nature is rooted in earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desires, and hat lust which is idolatry.  These are the sins which provoke God’s wrath.  Your own conduct was once of this sort, when these sins were your very life.  You must put that aside now: all the anger and quick temper, the malice, the insults, the foul language.

Stop lying to one another.  What you have done is put aside your old self with its past deeds and put on a new man, one who grows in knowledge as he is formed anew in the image of his Creator.  There is no Greek or Jew here, circumcised or uncircumcised, foreigner, Scythian, slave, or freeman. Rather, Christ is everything in all of you.

Because you are God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with heartfelt mercy, with kindness, humility, meekness and patience.  Bear with one another; forgive whatever grievances you have against one another.  Forgive as the Lord has forgiven you.

Over all these virtues put on love, which binds the rest together and makes them perfect.  Christ’s peace must reign in your hearts, since as members of the one body you have been called to that peace.  Dedicate yourselves to thankfulness.

Let the word of Christ, rich as it is, dwell in you.  In wisdom made perfect, instruct and admonish one another.  Sing gratefully to God from your hearts in psalms, hymns, and inspired songs.  Whatever you do, whether in speech or in action, do it in the name of the Lord Jesus.  Give thanks to God the Father through him.