In the poem “Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front,” Wendell Berry’s mad farmer warns against the love of “the quick profit, the annual raise, vacation with pay,” a life which makes one “afraid to know your neighbors and to die.” Instead, the mad farmer exhorts us, “Every day do something that won’t compute. Love the Lord. Love the world”—and finally, “Practice resurrection.”
The disciples locked in the room in John 20:19 need help in practicing resurrection. Mary has already told them that she’s seen the Lord risen from the dead, but her testimony fails to penetrate their reality. Whether they don’t believe her or can’t imagine what her words mean, they remain prisoners of their fear and guilt.