Today is Holy Saturday.
For Christians, it is a day that we often forget exists and struggle to know what to do with it.
In terms of emotional clarity — Holy Saturday is a mud pile. The other days of Holy Week are laid out much clearer for us. On Palm Sunday we rejoice, on Maundy Thursday we ponder, remember and start to feel the sliminess of betrayal, on Good Friday we question and grieve with Jesus as he takes his last breath, and on Easter Sunday we rejoice with a thousand hallelujahs at what God has done.
But what happens to Saturday?
It feels like limbo. Caught between the heavy grief of Friday and the overwhelming joy of Sunday. What are we do to? Do we continue to grieve? Honor the day with silence? Or do we look forward to the future? Expect miracles and believe them to be so?
Perhaps this turmoil in my mind surrounding Holy Saturday is a metaphor for something bigger. Perhaps we are a people living in Holy Saturday. Living in limbo between a world that is broken, longing for justice and the hope of ultimate redemption and reconciliation.
On this Holy Saturday — what will we do? Perhaps we shall stand in solidarity with the innocent who are killed, hurt and wronged … those like Jesus? Allowing ourselves and others a hope of Easter while still honoring and recognizing the agonizing pain of Good Friday.
I’m reminded of one of my favorite quotes, fitting for the occasion:
When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives mean the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares. ~Henri Nouwen
On this Holy Saturday, may we be this friend, this advocate for others — honoring those who have been wronged, and standing alongside their struggle. May we practice a ministry of presence, not always solving or curing but sharing in the pains of life. May we find the balance of hope and remembrance before the dawn of a new creation. Amen.