From the Pastor's iPad
We Journey Through Lent to the Cross and Beyond…
We are, as the church, on a liturgical journey of the calendar to be with Jesus. In the New Testament, there are two different Greek words used that are translated as “time.” They are kronos, like chronological time, and kairos, which means eternal time. As we pass through 5 weeks of kronos of Lent, we attempt to connect in kairos as well.
Lent is a season, in which many customs we have attempt to remind us continually of Jesus’ story, and his final journey to Jerusalem, during which he knows full well that he is marked for death. He knows it is inevitable, and he knows it is part of the Father’s plan, but that does not mean he is enjoying it. He suffers greatly, and his friends, the disciples understand very little of what he teaches them. (This is especially true in this year’s Gospel, Mark). On the Mount of Transfiguration, Jesus knows what he has to do – Moses and Elijah come to give him counsel and aid, and, possibly, instructions. The way is clear: he “just” has to journey into the lion’s den so they can abuse, torture and kill him. Then the Father has promised to raise him from the dead.
How hard it must have been for Jesus to focus on the vague promise of being raised from the dead! What was that going to be like anyway; it had never been done before. Much more real would have been thoughts of torture and execution. Being stripped and beaten repeatedly. Being hauled in front of Pilate and the Jewish authorities while still trying to recover from the last beating. Life can be brutal today, but it was worse then. Thoughts of what was to come must have tormented him. But he bravely struggled on and completed the job he’d been assigned by God the Father.
Every devotion we do, every note of encouragement we write, every little pleasure we deny ourselves, every project we take on during Lent should be much more than “going through the motions.” All these, and our attendance during Holy Week services should be attempts to connect in kairos (eternal time) with what took place almost 2,000 years ago in a strange but intriguing place. The Greek word anamnesis capture the ancient Hebrew idea that we are participating in past events of our ancestors: Centuries later, they said, “When we came out of Egypt…”. May it be so with us and Jesus’ final journey in this life.
Your Fellow Traveler,