From a minor theme in Eastertide, this question, “Who sacrificed their well-being to take care of Jesus’ body?” To say that another way, someone has to pay for the cost of preparing a corpse for burial. In some cultures, the death of a loved one can bring a family into poverty, perhaps made worse when the primary breadwinner has died.
In Jesus’ case, Nicodemus paid for the burial site—giving away his own tomb, perhaps at the cost of having another one hewn out of solid rock in a pricey location. Several women used expensive spices and fabric to prepare Jesus’ body for the grave. In those cases, sacrifices were made, probably involving time and money. Maybe their reputations, too?
Why think about this? I’ve been wondering who is paying the enormous cost of taking care of the bodies of Ukrainians killed in the ongoing aggression by Russia. Even though Russia may be disposing of some corpses in mobile crematoriums, throughout the countryside, scores of Ukrainians have risked their well-being to find and bury loved ones. Loving sacrifices taking place during the season of Easter!
These thoughts lead me to another: This may be a time in the history of the world where all of us are called to sacrifice some of our well-being for the sake of people who have had their lives stolen from them. Not just their bodies, but their spirits, too. Their futures. And not just individuals, but whole countries, perhaps much of Eastern Europe.
During Easter, perhaps we can be part of the growing effort to bring life back to Ukrainians, to refugees throughout the world, to those rendered homeless by war. We can be like Nicodemus and the women followers of Jesus.
We can sacrifice during Easter, too.
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