And they lived happily ever after. We all know the classic fairy tale ending. We pretend to think it’s too naive and shallow. Even after a good outcome in life, there is always another challenge waiting around the corner. Good literature and drama from the very beginning did not end in such a way. Tragedies like Antigone, Hamlet, and Street Car Named Desire, are more esteemed works of art and seemingly more truthful to human life.
Human beings are indeed tragic figures. We know right and wrong. We frequently know solutions to our problems, yet we have a tragic flaw that leads us to come so close yet so far away from a happy ending. The problem isn’t just circumstance, it’s us.
Yet God did not remain in the audience eating popcorn, He entered our story. He became Mankind reduced to one, the Son of Man. Yet He doesn’t have a tragic flaw. In our flesh, as our brother, He purely loved God and His neighbor. He experienced every temptation. He gets us. Even more, He died with all our sins. He was forsaken by God as an unrepentant sinner would be. He lay in our grave. He took our tragic end within himself.
But then He changed the story. The outcome we all expect. Not this time. He rose from the dead and turned the crushing determinism of our fate around. He is risen. He is alive and well. He ascended to the right hand of His father and reigns. He lives happily ever after.
But the joy of Easter is not just Jesus’ triumph. It’s yours. He promises to forgive and raise you up too. His story is your story. He has come to pull you up out of the grave too.
In baptism, you are intertwined with Him. You are born again in Him. You are united in His death and His resurrection as St. Paul says in Romans 6. You are given a new story with a happy ending. The last chapter of your book is for certain, “…and they lived happily ever after.”
Remember that each day with each challenge. This is not the end. You will be ok.