Since Christ is resurrected, we can look with new eyes and a new heart at every event of our lives, even the most negative ones. Moments of darkness, of failure and even sin can be transformed and announce the beginning of a new path. When we have reached the lowest point of our misery and our weakness, the Risen Christ gives us the strength to rise again. If we entrust ourselves to him, his grace saves us! The Lord, Crucified and Risen, is the full revelation of mercy, present and working throughout history.”—Pope Francis
The tricky thing about Easter is that while our faith and often our minds tell us that now life is all alleluias and rainbows, the reality is that sometimes we’re still caught in some dark places. We might not be quite feeling the joy of resurrection. In today’s Gospel, Peter, James, John and the other disciples are going back to their fishing boats. We get the sense that they’ve given up on this life of proclaiming the Good News. They’re discouraged, they’re confused. They’ve seen the Risen Christ in the upper room but then he vanished again. It turns out the fishing isn’t all that great either. But they listened to the stranger on the beach telling them to try the other side of the boat. And Peter remembered the very beginning of his time with Jesus, when the novice told the experienced fisherman how to catch fish. He recognized the voice, the call, the inspiration. And, once again, his life was about to change. Pope Francis reminds us that at the heart of it all—our joys, our sorrows, our trials, our challenges, our heartaches—God’s presence is as simple and profound as a fire, a simple meal, a new way of seeing reality. The death and resurrection of Jesus reminds us that God knows it’s never easy. The Risen Christ bore the wounds of the cross as a sign of that. Remember that he’s with us every step of the way, loving us, nudging us forward, showing us a new way to see.
— from the book The Hope of Lent: Daily Reflections from Pope Francis,
by Diane M. Houdek