In between the Friday we call Good and Easter Sunday is the dark day called Holy Saturday.
We don’t attend services on that day. We typically let it pass as we move from the darkness of Good Friday to the Celebration of Easter. But we should not be too quick to jump through Holy Saturday.
Holy Saturday is the time of waiting and uncertainty. Holy Saturday is the time between “It is Finished!” and “He is Risen!” Holy Saturday is the day that must have been filled with anxiety, doubt and fear. The scriptures tell us that the disciples deserted Jesus and fled. All their hopes and ambitions must have come crashing down. They thought they had picked the right Messiah. They were so sure that Jesus was the chosen one.
Now what? Return home to parents and husbands and wives? “I told you so!” “How’d you get caught up in following that guy anyway?” “I hope the Romans don’t find you.” The humiliation of being wrong would have been unbearable. It couldn’t be true could it? It couldn’t be true? Jesus. Dead.
This is the space of Holy Saturday, when the only hope comes in the form of words that are so preposterous, so outrageous, they are utterly unbelievable.
On the third day he will be raised to life!
They hoped he was the Messiah. Now he is dead. It would take one stubborn person to keep hoping after that.
So they huddle together in that dark upper room. Waiting. Not daring to hope too much, but also not daring to not hope.
This is Holy Saturday. Holy Saturday is today. We too live in between. We live in between “He is Risen” and “Behold I am making things new!” Sometimes in the darkness we too are not daring to hope too much, but also not daring to not hope.
We too live in a time when the only hope comes in the form of words that are so preposterous, so outrageous, they are utterly unbelievable.
This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven.
Let us take courage to hang together in our upper rooms. Let us be stubborn in our hoping. He who fulfilled the hopes of his disciples then will fulfill the hopes of his disciples now.