The Easter Smile
Updated: Jul 8, 2020
“Now in the place He was crucified there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb where no one had ever been laid. So…as the tomb was close at hand, they laid Him there.”
Over the holy days of the Easter Triduum and into the Easter season, my heart was drawn to consider the mystery of the tomb. A place enclosed in the reality of death and yet transformed into a place of the most Glorious Life. There the Lord lay…lifeless in the depths of the tomb. Where all seemed hopeless, futile, defeated – a place that in every way signified death – the end.
And yet, there came a single moment…
When empty lungs were filled with breath.
When a body, cold and stiff, began to radiate with warmth.
When a heart, silent and still, began to beat once again.
When a body, surely dead, overspilled with new, Glorious Life.
All in one single moment…A moment that changed everything.
Very beautifully, this magnificent moment occurred in the quiet recesses of a dark tomb…in the secret depth of intimate solitude...with no Apostle, no disciple, friend or follower there to witness it. When Peter arrived at the tomb, “He saw the linen cloths lying and the napkin which had been on his head, not lying with the linen cloths but…rolled up in a separate place.” (John 20:6-7). The cloth that had covered the Lord’s face was “rolled up in a separate place.” Surely this was done with great care, as this was the moment when, uncovering His glorious face,
He smiled! The smile of all smiles. The kind of smile that can reach into the gloomiest of hearts and draw forth a smile in return. The kind of smile that communicates even more than words could describe. A smile that knows, indeed, the victory is won and soon all shall know this. A smile that says, “See what my Father has done? Sin and death are not to reign in you. Love has won! The Father’s heart has spoken and triumphed eternally and definitively.” The kind of smile that pierces through my every darkness, my every sorrow, my every suffering, worry, grief, sickness, weakness…my every sin. A smile that lifts me up, fills me with peace, hope, love and life. In His smile, I know all will be well.
This Resurrection smile, this Easter smile is exactly what my heart needs! This, I believe, is what our world needs at such a time as this. In a time when smiles may be few and far between, whether that is because of the great distance between us or the masks that may cover our faces, let us fix our eyes on the one smile that can never be taken away from us. The smile of the Risen Lord. And may we smile back in the fullness of our hearts to Him who is forever victorious, forever gloriously triumphant.
Alleluia! The Lord is risen as he said, Alleluia!
Sr. Emmanuel (Novice)