Easter message is one of renewal, fulfillment

This column was originally published as part of my “Looking Homeward” series at Herald-Dispatch.com.

The sign hung over a general repair shop: “Nothing Broken Beyond Repair.”

Although we may appreciate the shop’s optimism and wish the sign could be true, the fact is there are things in this world broken beyond repair, and no amount of work can fix them.

But on Easter, a whole new fix-it fact is cranked into life’s formula, removing some of the Xs and Ys of the unknowns, replacing them with resurrection realities.

And over every church door, and on every tombstone, painted in eternity-size letters by two overlapping brushes that made a cross, are the words: “Nothing Broken Beyond Repair.”

Ah, that one has teeth in it because God backs it up with his power and his love.

That’s the Easter message, proclaiming that the blanks of a person’s life have been filled in, completing the sentence and removing the question mark, putting in its place not merely a period but an exclamation point.

Life has a renewed purpose.

Joan Sauro, in her book “The Whole Earth Meditation,” compares the layers of the natural earth with the layers of the “inner earth” in our lives. She contends that if we allow ourselves to live fully from within, walking the terrain of our inner being that we will find, “God has been there before us. God’s name is written on every layer.

“Go to the place called barren,” she encourages. “Stand in the place called empty. And you will find God there.”

God has a way of making empty things full. He takes an empty cross, adds an empty tomb, and the two equal a full gospel, designed to fill emptiness in a person’s life and make full the blank spaces of civilization’s unknown equations.

During Easter, the commotion found in a cemetery became prelude to a symphony unheard in humanity’s history, promising that all life’s “commotions” could have Easter-meaning, making sense of senseless living.

As Nietzsche put it, “He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how.”

When we come to know the why of Easter, the why of Good Friday and Black Saturday and the why of discipleship, then we can bear almost any how, and any circumstance, situation or problem.

Early on that Sunday morning, realities surface with the resurrection, unlocking forbidden and hidden doors, revealing first-time insight into humanity’s age-old question, “If a man dies shall he live again?”

Something happened here on a Sunday. It was called Easter. One cannot window shop from the sidewalk of faith’s storefront and honestly ignore the event. Even the person without faith must in candor whisper, “Something happened here.”

On the main streets, side streets, back streets, and every lane and winding road, renewal happens when any person dares to make Easter a verb, allowing the reality of the resurrection to sink in.

Easter happens when we move from, “He is not here,” to, “He is here.”

Where nothing broken is beyond repair.