Have you ever had to wait for something? Waited for spring break to start? Waited to hear if you got the job? Waited for a baby to be born? These are all exciting things to wait for. But have you ever waited with a sense of dread? Like waiting in a hospital room or waiting for test results?
Jesus said that “the sign of Jonah” would be offered to his contemporaries as a miraculous sign from God. Just like Jonah was in the belly of the whale for three days, so God’s Messiah would die and be consigned to the belly of the earth for three days. But here’s the thing, the Jewish people kept time like car rental companies! That is to say, any portion of a day counts for an entire day. Jesus died on Friday, was in the tomb all day on Saturday, and remained there until his resurrection on Sunday morning. Three days: Friday, Saturday, and Sunday... they all count!
So today, on Saturday, we wait. Saturday of Holy Week is the special day of silence and grave solemnity for Christians. The Son of God is in the ground. Humanity has seemingly snuffed out the divine among us. But we need not wait in dread. We wait in hope and it is fitting to wait in the quiet, silent as a stone. Activity: Take your rocks and turn them over. Hide whatever writing you have previously added to them. Cover the rocks with a piece of cloth or a coat or put them away in a closet or a drawer.
Spend some time (as a family) in silence out of respect for Jesus who died. Set an appropriate time (maybe only a few minutes for young children!) to break the silence, perhaps with the Bible reading for today.