Monday, March 28, 2016

Easter Monday Reckonings

Here we are at Easter Monday, the day of exhaling for many of us, after an intense week of many religious services.  My thoughts have swirled with all the images of the religious observances this week, and I've thought of these lessons for all of us.

--Palm Sunday reminds us that the crowd that cheers for us on Sunday may be crying out for Crucifixion by Friday.

In what ways are we too invested in the way the world thinks of us?  How can we differentiate between fake cheer and genuine support?

--Some of our Maundy Thursday services mention Passover, which some traditions tell us Jesus was celebrating when he ate the last supper.  Passover reminds us that when deliverance comes, it may come quickly and we should be ready, with our sandals laced and our lunches ready.

What would you take with you if you had to leave quickly?  Do you know where your important documents are?  Do you have your writing projects in a portable format?  What are your most important pictures?  Where are they?

--Maundy Thursday shows us how to build community:  share a meal together.  How can we do more of that?

--Good Friday reminds us of all the ways we can betray the ones we love.  The Easter season tells us what to do when we have betrayed our loved ones:  apologize and try to love better. Peter's approach of apology is much better than Judas Iscariot's, the suicide route.

--I'm remembering the year we gave my nephew Easter stickers, which he loved and took great joy in sticking everywhere.  Each packet of stickers  only cost a few dollars, yet they brought more joy than an expensive present would have brought.

What inexpensive joys can we add to our lives with more regularity?

--Easter Sunday, the empty tomb, the followers looking for the living amongst the dead.  Where are we doing the same things?  Which practices give health and wholeness to our lives?  What entombs us?

--These holidays point to the possibility of renewal.  We might think of our own lives--where would we like to see a resurrection?  Are there projects that we've left for dead that we should revisit?  Are there dreams that have been enslaved that we should set free? What relationships might yet be revived?

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