Monday, March 31, 2008

Luke 24:13-49

Easter 3

Luke 24:13-49

With or without power from on high Jesus is capable of surprising.

We seem incapable of recognizing Jesus on the testimony of someone else, even a fellow-traveler on our way. Jesus isn't recognized as present even when we relate past tales and experiences with him. Jesus isn't recognized in all the prophetic scripture that might be re-pointed toward him.

Jesus becomes recognizable in the breaking of bread and the sharing a cup. And, then, like any good catalyst, leaves unchanged, but leaves a changed situation. Jesus becomes a new community and gives it space to re-form.

Later we hear. witness added to witness, that a resurrection has taken place. And, yet, fear is a first reaction to a next surprise visit by Jesus. Again our fight or flight response needs to be addressed with a word of new perspective and possibility – peace.

Here the whooshing wind of a new creation doesn't come immediately after a word of peace and a revelationary reorientation. Now we hear - it will be coming. Those of us who know the story can see this as a setup by Luke to get his sequel (Acts of the Apostles) off to a fast start. And, so, we are left hanging having taken all the courses, done our best with the tests along the way, and written a thesis based on our gifts. No diploma, no power from on high, and here we are.

Can it be so or is it Luke's understanding that, like a maple double samara (winged fruit), the disciples are to be maturing in Jerusalem and when the time is ripe they will be spun two-by-two out into the surrounding countryside. Maturing is different than waiting, though it does entail waiting.

How's your maturing going where you are? How's your partner in ministry? How's your spinning outward going? How's your readiness for a surprise?

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