I left Christ Church Cathedral this morning, ready to start anew.
That's what I received from my.lenten.experiment. The hope of a new beginning. An opportunity.
For years and years, I've thought about Easter in terms of salvation. The replacement of the sacrificial system. That Jesus made a way. Which is, I still believe, true.
Yet, isn't Easter also a chance of redemption? Isn't it a fresh start? Doesn't the tearing of the temple curtain mean, besides direct access to the Father, that it's a new day? BOOM! Everything changed. In.an.instant. Can't I try that today? Can't I leave the cathedral and start over?
I've learned through my experiment this season, that justice and peace are part of the Plan. Actually, I've come to realize more and more that the [Plan] is all encompassing. It's more than a ticket to eternal life. It's more than feeling nice when I buy a low income kid a Christmas gift. It's more than whether or not you or I or anyone is doing anything. The Plan is bigger than that. Because really, if it all depends on me or you or any human being.....we're all doomed, right? So maybe, just maybe, I can relax.
And I've learned that not all my mistakes are [sins]. Dare I say that? I've done some things wrong. I've swayed off the path that's most likely best for me. But I don't have to assume the guilt of a horribly wretched person. And I don't have to concern myself with the seeming success of others who may/may not be doing what they are supposed to do. Does God reward.bless.encourage success like the world? Wouldn't that mean that Tim Tebow's team will always win the Super Bowl???
I am [thankfully] forgiven or accepted or whatever label I choose to use. And that means freedom. Freedom to be me. And start over.
This guy, Clarence Jordan, puts it better:
"The resurrection of Jesus was simply God's unwillingness to take our 'no' for an answer. He raised Jesus, not as an invitation to us to come to heaven when we die, but as a declaration that he himself has now established permanent eternal residence here on earth. He is standing beside us, strengthening us in this life. The good news of the resurrection of Jesus is not that we shall die and go home to be with him, but that he has risen and comes home with us, bringing all his hungry, naked, thirsty, sick prisoner brothers with him."I agree with Clarence. And I wish you Happy Easter.