“The Risen Christ is not a one-time miracle but the revelation of a universal pattern that is hard to see in the short run.” — Richard Rohr
“Endings are not really endings, but doorways to the next thing.” — Anon
“Sometimes, when you’re feeling buried under, you’re really just being planted.” — Queer Eye
“Listen carefully: Unless a grain of wheat is buried in the ground, dead to the world, it is never any more than a grain of wheat. But if it is buried, it sprouts and reproduces itself many times over. In the same way, anyone who holds on to life just as it is destroys that life. But if you let it go, reckless in your love, you’ll have it forever, real and eternal.” — Jesus
I hope your Easter weekend was as beautiful a celebration of life as it was in eleven:eleven this past Sunday (and throughout the church). Hannah Kirby was amazing as always, the band couldn’t have sounded better, and there were some wonderful, serendipitous surprises (it’s Easter, after all!).
To talk of resurrection often feels like something limited to a theological orthodoxy, some reference to an ancient, traditional creed that doesn’t always feel resonant with 21st century thinking. But my 6-year-old granddaughter and I were out planting some seeds several weeks ago and she asked an innocent enough question that had never occurred to me to ask, “Do you think that seed gets scared is scared when it gets buried under?”
Resurrection is really about the potentialities of life, the assurance that love prevails, the awakening awareness that every darkness is an invitation to light (or as Leonard Cohen wrote, “Ring the bells that still can rick, forget your perfect offering. There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.”) Scary? Yes. Hard and cold and completely buried under at times? Absolutely.
But Easter and all the stories that follow with Jesus’ appearances and the subsequent witness to love that compels 2000 years of compassion and justice (in spite of institutional, imperial distraction and power mongering), remind us that love prevails. Life will out ultimately!
I suspect you can look back over the years and think of some unexpected moment, when you felt completely buried, overwhelmed, ashamed, full of unrequited spite, scared . . . little did you know at the time you were but being a seed planted. And sometimes the familiarity of that dark, underground, soil, keeps us buried under. But then maybe you were able to let it go, to die to whatever it was that was overwhelming you. And to your surprise, some light broke through. Sometimes the time of darkness can feel like an eternity with no end in sight.
Of course, sometimes we also have to let the light in . . . (or in some cases, realize, that resurrection has always been there and it’s more a matter of letting the light out!). Perhaps you have felt this before.
Maybe you’re thinking this would be nice to feel for a change.
This Sunday I am starting a 4 week series on Resurrection Stories — stories of being planted! Time has a way of turning the soil. So, we’ll explore time and the many ways we live in the past and forget we are made for resurrection! I hope you can join us!
Sunday, April 28, at eleven:eleven, downtown
“it’s about time”
rev. tom mcdermott
with brad thompson, the revolution band, and the music of
willie dixon, beth wood, michael kiwanuka!
Associate Pastor of eleven:eleven
Alexei Sultanov Tribute Concert
Sunday, April 28, 2019
7:00 – 8:15 pm | Sanctuary
Dace Sultanov, cellist, along with Brad Thompson and the eleven:eleven band, will present an unforgettable evening of some of Alexei Sultanov’s favorite music, including hits by Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, Earth Wind and Fire, and other big names of pop, rock, jazz, and soul music genres.