Monday, March 10, 2014

John 3:1-17

Year A - Second Sunday in Lent or Conviction [2]
March 16, 2014

There are those who have what feels like an instantaneous conversion. Nicodemus was not one of these. His journey was an evolving one.

Even though we pick up his story in the night, Nicodemus has his eyes wide open to see the terrain of his current life. Signs had been seen and he desired to investigate the signs. In another era we would have called him a scientist. He begins by asking questions based on what is currently known: the birthing process is linear and not reversible.

And a new thought: physical birth is only one kind of birth. We know that we are built from birth to have multiple, if not infinite, births of physical regeneration. There are additional births of stages of life and insight and relationships and so much more that we experience along the journey from a birth to a death. These are as mysterious as a first conception and a first birth.

Questions comes to haunt us. We are all creatures of our time. We do not understand what we have not encountered. We can’t think our way into knowing what we don’t know. We can but be open to hearing the results of other experiments and be ready to test them in our setting.

It is not just a matter of believing what we believe but to live as though we are not condemned to remain at our current level of engagement. Is the present the best that can be imagined and tested? No, we are not condemned to remain in the limits of love we have. We are invited to an expansive and expanding love (universe, if you will).

Nicodemus’ journey has a ways to go in the Christian scriptures and who knows where beyond that, but for now Lent takes on a new level of commitment to be open to what might yet be. Our blessing includes the option to test a new openness, to draw nearer a next dawn.

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