Crucifying god this Easter.

It’s Easter and if you’re not already stuffed on chocolate I suggest you stop reading and get to it. What other time in the year will you be able to indulge, guilt free.

It’s an interesting idea isn’t it? At Christmas and Halloween we know we’re going to eat a lot of candy but it’s not until after when we hit the scales and the self disgust kicks in. But at Easter, a time when we are supposed to remember the ridiculous, non sensical gift of Grace, we give ourselves permission to indulge.  Continue reading

A short reflection on the Christian Holiday you’ve never heard of.

It is now my favorite date on the Christian calendar yet I had never heard of it two years ago. Of course I’d heard the story of the Passover meal shared by Jesus and his disciples, the night where he predicted his own betrayal, only to be met with confusion and sleepy pals. But I had never really listened.

Maundy Thursday is new to me.

Easter is the time we celebrate Jesus resurrection but seldom do we take the time to focus on the dark part of Easter. And it is dark. We want to skip ahead to Sunday, but by doing so we miss out on something truly significant.

It makes sense that we want to pass this over. It’s not comfortable. You won’t find many churches hosting a Maundy Thursday service but it is a wonderfully solemn and deep experience.

I am writing this having just returned from one. The “Service of Shadows” (if there is ever a better name for a Church service I am yet to here it) leads us through six readings from the Gospels reflecting on the night where Jesus was betrayed and his eventual crucifixtion. The Shadow of Betrayal, The Shadow of Agony, of Arrest, of Denial, of Trial and of Suffering. Each reading accompanied with the extinguishing of a candle, slowly leading us further into darkness. Maundy Thursday

This is no coincidence.

There is no celebration here. There is no risen Christ. There is no awe or excitement. No victory. No defeated sin. No anxious rushing back to tell the others who you just bumped into.

It’s hard to see Jesus as a normal person but as much as He was God, He was a real Human being. On the night when He needed them most his friends fell asleep on Him. His frustration and anger can be felt. As much as Jesus was prepared to die, He wanted desperately to avoid what was coming.

We’re meant to see Jesus as fully human because it allows us to see ourselves as fully human. Maundy Thursday encourages us that there is something in the darkness that can be a gift. We don’t need to avoid it. We avoid it because we don’t want to face up to pain or suffering. That makes sense and that makes us human. It makes us Christlike.

But the message here is that whatever you are experiencing is alright. It doesn’t make you less human, it makes you fully human and ironically fully alive.

But today it is a distant Hope. We need to learn that it’s ok to feel this way. I don’t have good news for you but I do have this. We’re not alone. You’re not alone. We’re with you. This pain is what is going to make you stronger but that is for another day.

Resurrection will come. Freedom will come.

Soon, but not yet.

What’s the Point of Easter Sunday?

What does Easter Sunday and the resurrection of Jesus mean?

Well it means a lot. We don’t all agree exactly what it means. But it means something.

Whatever it means though, it won’t matter unless it’s something that draws us into a deeper and more meaningful life that creates room for the darkest and brightest parts of our lives to live side by side.

What matters is that something that changed the world forever occurred. Something that is opening up the world to a way where our pain doesn’t have to have the final say anymore.

Easter Sunday is the day we learn to accept our forgiveness.

In order that we can learn to forgive our enemies. (Tweet this)

Easter Sunday is the day we learn to pray like Jesus did, for the people that have wronged us. Where the people and the groups and the enemies that seek to destroy us can not, because Jesus took them on and came out on top.

But not through violence or a desire to even the score, but through a simple plea for forgiveness. The “them” Jesus calls for God to forgive is not one specific group of people (sorry) but all people (sorry). (Tweet this)

It’s me.
It’s the bullying boss who makes your life a living nightmare.
It’s Isis.
It’s Protestants and Catholics.
It’s Child Abusers.
It’s Republicans and Democrats.
It’s Muslims, Jews and Buddhists and every person who sees the world different than me.
It’s the LGBT community.
It’s the heterosexual community.
It’s the groups that want to reject someone for their skin color, political ideology or sexual orientation.
It’s Barack Obama.
It’s the terrorists who murdered journalists in Paris.
It’s the high jackers from 9/11.
It’s you.
It’s Nigel Farage.
It’s David Cameron.
It’s Sinn Fein.
It’s the DUP.
It’s Boko Haram.
It’s Joseph Kony.
It’s “them”.

It’s the destruction of the curtain that separates the worthy and unworthy to create reconciliations that will surprise and shock us all.

It’s the great reconciliation between God and every man, woman and child.

This is where we find Hope. This is where we find Peace. This is where we find Forgiveness.

This is not just good news.

This, is the the best news.