Posts Tagged “jesus”

So, that’s Easter all done.  What now?  What difference did it make?  Did anything change?  What are you left with?

Crosses

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Happy Easter to you all!

Mark 16
The Resurrection
1When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus’ body. 2Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb 3and they asked each other, “Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?”

4But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away. 5As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed.

6″Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. 7But go, tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.’ “

8Trembling and bewildered, the women went out and fled from the tomb. They said nothing to anyone, because they were afraid.

The women who found the empty tomb were trembling and bewildered.  They were afraid.

Why aren’t we?  Why doesn’t the thought that God has overcome death, that God has escaped, that God is on the loose, terrify us?

I didn’t go to church this morning.  Instead I watched church on TV.  I watched a Bishop in his fine robes in a magnificent cathedral read words, swing incense and celebrate communion with fine silver and gold.  I watched the people gathered in a circular square chant the name of a priest like they would chant the name of a rock star.  I saw him in his fine robes call on the balcony of his palace call for peace and an end to poverty.  I read news stories of a Bishop who wants football games banned on Easter Day, as though watching your team play is all that distracts people or puts them off church.

This week Jonathon asked what the Temple curtain being torn when Jesus died meant for us.  I replied ‘God is on the loose’.  God is not in our box.  God is not contained in our churches, out liturgies, our statements, our sacraments or our sermons.

God is on the loose.  That should be a gloriously terrifying thought.  Who knows where and when we might meet the risen Christ…

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Church can be an odd place, full of odd people.  What sometimes makes it odder is that these odd people think that other people are odd.  Despite Jesus’ ‘great commandment’ to love each other as He loved us we shy away from strangers, we are fearful of difference and we gravitate towards people who are like us and who do like us.

This week’s lectionary Gospel reading is that odd story of  the Emmaus Road where two disciples walk with a stranger who asks them about what has happened over easter.  They tell him and the stranger starts to talk scripture with them, reminding them of all the things Jesus had said.  Still they don’t recognise him.

Why?  Why can’t they see Him for who he is?  It’s not until he breaks the bread that they really see him.

I wonder if it was because they didn’t expect to see Jesus?  They just weren’t looking.

I wonder how often we miss Jesus because we aren’t looking?  How often we just don’t see?

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lanark greyfriars

Yesterday I was at Lanark Greyfriars leading worship. Despite a random powerpoint disaster – disaster is probably a bit strong, the pictures were fine but the music decided not to play – (you know the kind: works before service, doesn’t work in service, works fine after service) it was ok.

It was the first Sunday of Lent and the readings were about Jesus’ time in the wilderness where he was tempted by the devil.

I often wonder why people give stuff up for lent. I’m not a big fan of stopping things, and would even advocate you do something new or different for lent. But I guess the practice of giving up comes very much from Jesus’ 40 days in the barren wilderness with nothing to do but think. I said yesterday that the temptations Jesus faced were the kind of things we are all faced with and are often the things we let get in the way, between us and God. Power, glory hunting, self-reliance.

So maybe giving up something is a good idea, but I think I’m going to spend more time doing the things I find hard, reading the Bible and praying. Maybe that means some other things will go to make room for these but that’s ok. And I’m still eating chocolate!!!

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