Following on from yesterday’s thought, I love the way that the texts for Easter Week from the Roman Missal emphasise the unity of this week. It’s as if to say that the light of Easter Day is too bright to remain within the confines of 24 hours: we need a whole week of Sundays and a whole week of weeks to even begin to express the enormity of the transformation initiated by events of the early dawn of that first ‘eighth day’.
One of the repeated texts in the Missal is the Gradual: ‘This day was made by the Lord: we rejoice and are glad.’ (Psalm 117/118:24) The Hebrew could equally be translated, ‘this day, God has acted’ and I like the multiple meanings allowed by this simple phrase. Each day is at the same time a fresh gift and an opportunity to recognise the ‘action’ of God in raising Christ.
It feels to me like a similar insight as the one we find in the Prologue to St Benedict’s Rule, which invites us to to attend to the ‘today’ in the Venite, Ps 94/95:8 – ‘O that today you would listen to his voice’ – as an opportunity to wake up each day, be enlightened, be open to the world around us, be open to one another, be attentive to the voice of the Living One. In Anglican tradition, we a further thought to that one during Eastertide as we sing the Easter Anthems in place of the Venite, which invite us to ‘see ourselves as alive to God’ (from Rom. 6:9).
Here again, the tradition offers us a simple daily practice of being awake to Life. Each day offers a new opportunity, whatever lies ahead of us and whatever yesterday brought, to be alive rather than simply exist.