Identity: An Eastertide Reflection

Holy Week was like a mini spiritual/physical marathon. We, the Melbourne Encounter team, were lucky to attend Mass at a variety of locations: local parishes, the Cathedral and a detention centre. Experiencing the Paschal Triduum split among many services really brought about a true sense of unity; although it is done in different ways with different traditions and resources Catholics all around Melbourne and the whole world are celebrating the same thing. The resurrection of Jesus. And I think that this is a real representation of what ministry in Melbourne is like. Diverse, exciting, unexpected, alive and thought-provoking.

It has been a real blessing to see the effects the resurrection of Jesus brings across this colourful city. Our ministry so far has varied from retreats, youth groups, working with parishes, weekly adoration, young adult hangouts and Archdiocesan events and seminars. It has been with people from across the globe and at all different walks of life. Across the vast array of ministry types, of our own spiritual growth, evangelism types and team dynamics – flourishing and transforming, we have seen a God who is and always will be the same. It is this literal life-giving power that shows us that Jesus doesn’t need shiny things to be present. We have a Saviour that is so so humble and so so loving that he chooses to love us and reveal himself to us in every place we come to worship him. Whether he’s placed in a golden chalice or a paper cup.

Not only does Jesus slowly reveal himself to us but He continues to reveal our identity as a daughter or son of Christ Jesus. Easter brings an opportunity where we are able to reflect on the stones that keep us in the tomb and from the resurrection of Jesus which calls us to a new life, in and with Him. This challenges us to surrender ourselves to God, to fully lay down all our distractions, plans, idea and selves to him. To receive the full glory of Easter we must surrender our whole lives to God and trust in Jesus’ resurrection.

“I had gifts that were pierced with pride and imperfection, I had longings that often sought to satisfy my own will more than God’s, and I had blessings that I was inclined to hold tightly to, instead of using them for the greater good. But that is not my identity anymore. I am honest, loved, holy, and able to bring Christ glory by sharing the gifts and blessings he has given me to those around me. This is not by my own doing, but by the grace of Jesus Christ gained through his death and resurrection which we celebrate during the Easter Season.
Praise God that he loves us so much that he takes our broken hearts and, because of the sacrifice of his son, he is able to offer us a new identity in Christ. Let’s not settle for anything less, we have been created for greatness. Don’t let the opinions of other people make you doubt God’s Plan.”
– Zac, on the Melbourne Encounter team on his own journey with his identity in Christ

This season of Eastertide brings an opportunity where we are able to step into the abundance of His love and live fully in the resurrection. He is capable of bringing new life to us every day. Our identity does not come from within our own hearts but comes from God, who has written it in our hearts. I pray that we can remember our identity in Christ, who overcame all darkness and death; solely because of his deep love for us.

So throughout these 50 days of celebration, we remember the journey of the cross and are reminded that Jesus is not done. The story did not end on Calvary. This is a different marathon. It’s one where we, through the grace of God, can own the new life, the bounty of love and the identity He gives us every day.

Melbourne Encounter team

« back