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What Are We Waiting For?

Do you believe that Christ was raised from the dead?  

Believe the same of yourself.

— St. John of  Chrysostom

Why is this so hard for us?

Why so little evidence among Christians?

What are we waiting for?

No Thanks, Mr. President

Thomas Jefferson had his own version of The New Testament.

He edited out anything he deemed supernatural.

What was left of The Gospels was, ironically for a slave owner, just the teachings of Jesus on morality.

The life of Jesus ended with the words, “There laid they Jesus and rolled a great stone at the mouth of the sepulcher and departed.”

No resurrection.

No Easter.

No thanks, Mr. President.

 

Because of The Resurrection

How would you finish this sentence?

“Because of the Resurrection of Christ, _________________.”

I’d love to hear from you; any of the usual contact methods will work.

See you back here soon…because of the Resurrection of Christ.

BONUS EDITION: memo to other pastors on easter monday

Memo to Other Pastors on Easter Monday

I’m tired.  You, too?

In fact, I told Patty at lunch yesterday that I was depleted.  You know that feeling, too?

I get accused of being so high-energy that I’m like the bunny in that battery commercial that just “keeps going and going and going.”  You’ve been there, too, I’m sure.

Meanwhile, back here in the real world where you and I live and minister as working pastors, we get worn out.

Ash Wednesday was a long time ago.  Lent brought extra opportunities for our people and us.  For how many weeks?!

And then there was Holy Week.  I’ve read online about how many of us have had like 6, 7, even 8 worship services between Thursday and Sunday.

The gauntlet of Holy Week’s scriptures and liturgy left us with spiritual and emotional whiplash.

Meanwhile, all the ordinary, regular stuff of life and ministry continued while we kept adding extra things.

And now it’s Easter Monday and we’re tired.  Depleted.  Bunnies who need re-energizing.

Some laity will understand, some won’t, and most won’t care.  None were involved in everything you did during Lent, Holy Week and Easter.  For a few, your Easter sermon and all that music took too much time and confirmed why they don’t attend regularly.

Instead of complaining about all this, or worse yet bragging about how much we’ve done, let’s take a page from the playbook of the Christ we serve.  For example, you might want to take some time and

+ start with doing what Matthew 14:23 says Jesus did

+ see what John 21:1-14 has to say about your energy, your efforts, and your need for refreshment

+ notice what Jesus was doing in Mark 4:38…might be time for you today to “go and do likewise.”

Take care of yourself, Pastor.  You and your ministry are worth it.

After all, to paraphrase something I’m sure we’ve all used, “It’s Monday…but Sunday’s coming.”

 

 

 

Living What We Sang

Pop Quiz, one question.

1. Is Easter over?

Short Answer: No.

Longer Answer: Easter is intended to be more that just one day.  Lent was a season that preceded Easter for 40 days not counting Sundays.  Then came Easter.  Now we’re in The Great Fifty Days of Easter.

Explanation: Church history tells us that Easter Season was initially a time of continuing the teaching and training that began in Lent.  People who had been baptized on Easter Sunday were now ready for both practical and doctrinal instruction.  At the end of these Great Fifty Days, on Pentecost Sunday, they were commissioned for Christian service in the world.

That’s a good process to remember.

And what’s at the center?  Easter.

And who’s at the center?  The Resurrected Christ.

It’s Easter Monday.  Let’s live what we sang about yesterday.  Ready?

 

Easter Sunday

“The resurrection of Jesus

was simply God’s unwillingness

to take our ‘no’ for an answer.”

— Clarence Jordan

There really IS so much to celebrate this Easter Sunday; don’t cheat yourself out of a worship service today!

Saturday of Holy Week

From an ancient homily for Holy Saturday:

Something strange is happening.

There is a great silence

and stillness on earth today,

because the King is asleep.

God has died in the flesh.

 

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