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From Easter Sunday to Pentecost, the church celebrates “Eastertide.” Fifty days to rejoice in the resurrection of Jesus. We repeat the words of the angel so many years ago, “He is Risen!” Nature joins in on the celebration, with flowers blooming across the countryside. None are more special to the Guatemalans than their national flower, the Monja Blanca Orchid.

The Monja Blanca, or “white nun,” is named for its unique center petals, which resemble a woman kneeling in prayer. The beauty of the Monja Blanca is known worldwide. Beginning in the 1800s, traders shipped this orchid around the world, decimating the local supply until the Guatemalan government enacted an export ban in the 1940s. This precious flower is still endangered today. To the people of Guatemala, the Monja Blanca represents peace and purity.

We focus on these same values during Eastertide. Christ’s resurrection has become our own,

“For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his” (Romans 6:5).

Our new life in Christ looks profoundly different than the old. As God promised to the prophet Isaiah, though our souls were once red with sin, they have been made “white as snow” (Isaiah 1:18). These colors signify the purity of our new life. Clothed in the righteousness of Christ, there is no moment where we are not seen as holy before God. If Isaiah was a prophet in Guatemala he might have written, “Though your sins are like scarlet, I will make you as white as the Monja Blanca in bloom.”

Modern morality preaches self-improvement and good deeds. In this plan, the good has to outweigh the bad. The constant striving to prove ourselves often leads to perfectionistic behavior and inevitable shame. Amidst all this chaos, the Christian stands serene. Though we still sin and fall short, we remain at peace with God. When we find peace in his perfect promises, when we trust that our righteousness is secure, we remain unshaken. Just like the orchid, our resurrected lives are a symbol of tranquility.

Botanists recently discovered plants are communal. Healthy plants use fungal networks to share resources with their struggling siblings. So should we. As Christians, we have been gifted an incredible transformation. Our peace and purity in Christ are a beacon, a bloom in a barren field. When others draw close out of curiosity or exhaustion, may we be quick to share our best resource for peace: the Resurrection of Christ.


God, We thank you for Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection. Through his sacrifice, we have died and been brought to new life. We pray that our resurrected hearts would serve as an example of your love and kindness to a lost and hurting world. May we share the good news of Jesus with everyone we meet.


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