passing over to new life

The Resurrection of Christ by Paolo Veronese via Wikimedia Commons

Lord, you have passed over into new life,
   and you now invite us to pass over also.
In these past days we have grieved
   at your suffering and mourned at your death.
We have given ourselves over to repentance and prayer,
   to abstinence and gravity.
Now at Easter you tell us that we have died to sin.

Yet, if this be true, how can we remain on earth?
How can we pass over to your risen life,
   while we are still in this world?
Will we not be just as meddlesome,
   just as lazy, just as selfish as before?
Will we not still be bad-tempered and stubborn,
   enmeshed in all the vices of the past.
We pray that as we pass over to you,
   our faces will never look back.
Instead, let us, like you, make heaven on earth.

Bernard of Clairvaux, 1090-1153 French abbot and Cistercian mystic


You took off your former way of life,
the old self that is corrupted by deceitful desires;
you are being renewed in the spirit of your minds;
you put on the new self,
the one created according to God’s likeness
in righteousness and purity of the truth.

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