I tell you the truth, you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices. You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy.
I come from a culture where you’re expected to grieve for up to a year after the death of a loved one, which means no festivities of any kind. In fact, it’s considered disrespectful if you’re found celebrating during this period. I beg to differ with this tradition. To me, death has come to mean the celebration of a life well lived here on earth and the beginning of a new and better one in heaven. (I’ve already decided that I’d like a tea party in my honour when the good Lord calls me Home!)
See, when Jesus, God’s beloved Son died, the devil and all of hell rejoiced but for the wrong reasons. But the tables were turned when Jesus came back to life on the third day, defeating death and the devil, and guaranteeing not only our salvation but also our own resurrection.
Yes, the death of Christ was tragic and brutal and He invites us to remember and proclaim it whenever we partake in communion until the day of His coming, but not with sorrow (1 Cor. 11:23-26). Jesus is alive and well and He is preparing a place for us in Heaven. That’s a good enough reason to rejoice whenever we remember His death.