Sunday, March 18, 2007

Fifth Sunday in Lent – A

Fifth Sunday in Lent – A

Years A
Ezekiel 37:1-14
Psalm 130
Romans 8:6-11
John 11:1-45


The church in Rome might also hear that to set the mind on death is to focus on flesh and to set the mind on life and peace is spirit work. These things are not one-way orientations. If we take death as an advisor for what to pay attention to in life, we might name death a spiritual advisor. Likewise, life and peace find their context in death, what transforms it, redeems it, resurrects it.

And so Ezekiel's bones cry out as much as the spirit of the Lord. Lazarus' flesh cries out as much as do Martha and Mary and Jesus. Out of the depths comes a cry for new life and that is tied in with forgiveness.

The Lord needs to deal with forgiveness issues with those lying in the valley of dust. Jesus, Mary, Martha, and Lazarus have forgiveness issues with one another. Forgiveness is still a key element in our lives and deaths that desires resolution beyond every opportunity for resolution. A key question: how we are doing with our forgiving and receiving of forgiveness?

= = = = = = =

O so slow we are
to establish a relationship
on and in and through
forgiveness

justice calls for it
and justice grinds slow
but it does surface
even from the dead

forgiveness drives
a hard bargain
as steadfast love's
altar ego

it will not give up
until satisfied
slow or fast
eventually

leaving us a choice
cooperation early
prolonged resistance
but no choice

bones will rise
flesh will be unwrapped
death becomes spirit
peace becomes flesh

fear not O crier
from deep places
there is forgiveness
wait - hope - redeem

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