Our Lenten journey is nearing an end for us this year, and once again we will be focused on Holy Week and Easter. What are you searching for this Easter?
If you ask some children, they may tell you, "colored eggs and chocolate!" But I think most of us are searching for things that are more lasting and permanent and satisfying. I believe that most of us are looking for relationships in which we can give of ourselves, and receive love and acceptance from others. Many are looking for ways to share their talents and blessings in ways that will make the world a better place. We are also looking to see the joy and delight in others who receive the blessings that we share gladly. And, sometimes we seek forgiveness from others and a new beginning; and, sometimes we seek those we need to forgive, offering a new start.
Those of us who are in relationship with Jesus Christ have a good idea where to begin, or continue looking for what we are seeking. We understand the context of being in fellowship, community, and Church. We understand that our journeys intersect and are held together in the Body of Christ. So, we who are already on the search open our hearts to those whose struggles are similar to ours, and are seeking what we seek.
I invite you to look around you this week and watch for others who are searching for a more lasting, permanent, and satisfying way of life. Invite them to search along with you when you gather this week in your place of worship, prayer, or fellowship. Invite them to hear again the ancient story and ponder anew what it means for us and our future. Invite them to be reminded again that God’s love is too strong, too wide, and too deep for death to hold. Invite them to say yes again to the promise that we are among those blessed with joy and delight, even in the midst of darkness and grief.
What are we searching for this Easter? We are searching for how Jesus Christ will lead us on our journey forward into the future, and how we may include others along with us on our journey. Continue searching! Continue asking!
Grace and Peace,
Hee-Soo Jung, Ph.D.
Bishop Hee-Soo Jung has served as resident bishop of the Wisconsin Annual Conference since September of 2012. Prior to leading the Wisconsin Conference UMC, Bishop Jung served eight years as bishop of the Northern Illinois Conference (Chicago area).