Easter – The Second Chance
George Megalogenis released his new book “Australia’s Second Chance” late last year. It is subtitled ‘what our history tells us about our future’. In highlighting the current anxiety in society about our future economic development he points to a previous period in Australia’s history that saw a rate of economic growth that was the envy of the world at that time.
In a way that shadows the issue of national economic development there also is an observable growing anxiety about how to build a better personal future. It also is predicated on the question of a second chance. Is there a way to have a fresh start, a new beginning? It is as though our personal questions have coalesced around the communal hope for a way forward out of the mess of our current situation. Our media regularly carries the images of this anxiety on the faces of refugees behind barbed wire, the bruises of relationships breaking down, the tears of earlier childhood abuse, the isolating impact of racial hatred. Our heart felt response is that there has to be a better way, the possibility of recovery, a second chance.
Easter remains as an integral part of the fabric of our contemporary Australian society because it points to the moment in history when there was a profound demonstration of the possibility for a second chance. Out of the darkness of tragedy, injustice, despair and failure there is a bright light of hope.
The Easter celebration is a reminder that humans have been given a second chance. The Easter narrative records that in Jesus, and through relationship with Him we can find freedom from the shackles of fear, acceptance despite our faults and the opportunity to begin anew with God and our fellow humans. No matter how broken, how malevolent, how desperate we are, our lives can be liberated through Jesus Christ. Easter is about new beginnings, resurrection – bringing that which is dead back to life, hope in the midst of hopelessness, peace in the midst of conflict and joy in the midst of despair. Easter is about second chances.
The celebration of Easter begins with the surrender of our struggles at the foot of the Good Friday Cross and allowing the message of Sunday’s Resurrection to speak into our lives to bring wholeness and new life. Easter is the celebration of the second chance.
Rev Keith Jobberns
National Ministries Director
Australian Baptist Ministries