The World Belongs to Those Who Give it Hope

by Catherine Doherty

Christ is Risen! Alleluia! Once again, these words echo and re-echo across the world for it is Eastertide.

What now does Easter mean to the Christian in his or her ordinary daily life? It means hope. The world belongs to those who give it hope. Christ gave it hope, the supreme hope of love, of peace, of life everlasting. Now, it is the turn of the Christians to continue to give that love, that hope.

To do so, we who profess to believe in Christ, we must live his life in our life. But to do so, to truly live a Christlike life we must take the Gospels most seriously.

No. The word “serious” is too small. Perhaps there are no words to express how a Christian should embrace Christ’s Gospel. How he should live it out in the fullness of its fantastic reality.

Yes. We must love, as he loved. We must be meek and humble as he was. We must forgive again, and again, and again, as he forgave and forgives. We must turn the other cheek and if the need arises, we must lay down our lives for our brethren, as he did!

There can be no exceptions. Certainly there shouldn’t be any rationalization — for the time for rationalization is past. We cannot live the Gospel “in part.” We cannot tell God that we will go so far, and no further.

Today, it is all, or nothing at all, as far as the Gospel is concerned. We must accept Jesus Christ and his Gospel in its totality, in its essence. We must surrender to him and to it. For he is the Logos, the Word of the Father which is the Gospel.

For our technological age has never been so hungry for the un-weighable, un-measurable things of the Spirit, as it is today.

For truly man “cannot live by bread alone,” not even if he has walked on the moon. So Easter means to us followers of Christ, that we must now show to the world at any price, even the price of our life, the true face of Christ.

For we are surrounded by unbelieving Thomases who will not believe until they put their fingers into his wounds.

So we must show those wounds. How do we get such wounds? Very simply. By living the Gospel. For we who follow a crucified God must be crucified too. Crucified on the cross of faith, love and surrender.

Crucified also by struggle—the struggle that will go on between us and God. For the living of the Gospel without compromise is a tremendous struggle of man and God before this total surrender of man that brings so much joy and peace. This crucifixion, this struggle will leave the wounds that we must show to others.

Because we have surrendered ourselves to Christ, because we have accepted his Gospel in its totality, because we have stripped ourselves of ourselves, he will be able now to work his healing process through us, and people will find the faith, the love, the hope they so desperately seek and they will know that Christ is truly risen. Alleluia

From Restoration, April 1970