Thursday, January 17, 2013

1 Corinthians 12:1-11

Epiphany 2 - Year C

I haven’t said recently, “Let Jesus be cursed”. In fact I don’t know that I have ever said it. I certainly don’t intend to say it.

I have, from time to time, conveniently put Jesus out of mind. I have played one thing he said off against another. I have used my gifts for my own purposes rather than some degree of common good.

And the difference between the saying and doing is exactly the degree of hypocrisy in my life. How about you?

After such a generalized confession let’s get down to a seemingly small point — gifts are allotted to and activated by G*D. If you want to say Spirit, that’s fine. These gifts appear to be distributed in mysterious ways that we too easily chalk up to some spiritual plan.

Of interest here is a sense of continual shifts in gifts as call after call comes. Sometimes that is a re-call (no not a recall, a re-call) and we deepen the arena in which we are gifted and called. Sometimes our gifts and call broaden from one arena into another and we put one call down to pick up another.

This is prima facie evidence that gifts and call are living entities. As the spirit chooses, we claim, gifts and calls are allotted and activated. There is no room here for such discriminatory legislation to deny to a whole class of people what is clearly given - a gift and a call. For forty years the United Methodist Church has denied this piece of biblical wisdom, that gift and call need to be evaluated on a basis beyond whether or not a person is affectionally oriented toward a person of their same gender.

Mary saw a gift and a call in Jesus and put him in a position to acknowledge and act on both. Water not only revealed belovedness, but water revealed better wine than could be expected - a party reveling in community and relationship could be extended.

It might be said that the sign here is not water to wine, but the revelation of a gift and call not previously activated. When this sort of integrity is shown, we are speechless and simpy stammer out that some great thing must have passed by here (listen). In the midst of your wearlness may you still sing your gift, your call.

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