The apostles were frightened in the upper room. They heard from Peter and John about the empty tomb, but they were afraid. We are a bit like them as we believe in the resurrection but still often feel intimidated by difficulties and opposition. Now Jesus reveals Himself to His disciples and their fear melts away in joy. Jesus’ gift of peace to them was not for themselves only. Peace is the effect of Jesus’ presence in the Church, His lasting peace to us.
In the beginning of human existence, God breathed into Adam. By blowing on His followers, the risen Jesus now signals the beginning of a new human existence. A new way of being human has come into existence in Him, for He is the Word of God become human; in Him, human nature has been renewed by being united to God. Jesus Himself is human life made new. Through His death, resurrection and ascension, He now draws us into His divinely renewed human existence. He breathes on His disciples: He gives them the Spirit of God.
The disciples expected resurrection and a new creation at the end of time. Now they see Jesus already risen, and they themselves begin to experience a new creation. The wind that will blow in the new heavens and new earth already begins to gust in their minds and hearts. Through them Jesus will now continue His mission of bringing reconciliation with God to people everywhere.
We are called to be disciples of Jesus. We have received the Holy Spirit at Baptism, Confirmation, and every time we receive Holy Eucharist. May Jesus breath the Spirit of God once again on Pentecost Sunday. May the breath of God help us to bring the fire of God’s love to all we meet this day and everyday.