The scripture chosen for the Sundays of Lent sets out to establish Jesus as the Messiah of the Jews, the Saviour of the World, the Light of the Nations, and with the bringing of Lazarus back to life, Jesus as the son of God who has power over life and death; preparing us all for his resurrection on Easter day. A distinction has to be made between Lazarus being brought back to life and Jesus being raised from the dead.
There is no doubt that Lazarus would eventually die and with all the saints be raised on the last day. The scripture sets out to establish all authority in Heaven and upon Earth belongs to Jesus, ‘The Christ’; The Universal One. That’s the theology behind John’s Gospel.
Also on the 5th Sunday of Lent, the stakes are getting higher for Jesus and the anticipation of his arrest and death is heightened. You can’t separate talk about His death from His resurrection. As much as we want to celebrate Easter we are still in Lent, the final season of Lent called Passiontide. The final two weeks of deeper reflection and preparation.
Since the beginning of the year I have numbered the days on my calendar, so rather than counting the months I am mindful of the day we are, in 2017. Today is day 92. This helps me to SLOW down the pace of the year and be mindful of the daily passage of time, and experiencing God’s presence in the here and now.
As much as the scripture moves us towards Holy week and Easter, to celebrate the resurrection, we can only know God’s presence in the here and the now. The momentum of the church’s year is to experience the presence of the Living God in the present moment, not putting it off until the next life, or the resurrection of the Last day. However and whatever the next life is like and the resurrection on the last day will become, God is the God of LIFE. This life.
Tomorrow is owed to nobody. Today is the day of Salvation. All religions and spiritualties encourage what is called a rule of life, a daily structure that helps us keep mindful, God’s presence in all of life’s circumstances. Otherwise, the days slip into weeks and the weeks into months and the months into years. Having a practical spirituality gives you the tools to track your own spiritualty gives you the tools to track your own spiritual growth.
This would seem to be the point of having a spiritual life As the months becomes years we become older; do we become wiser? This also seems to me to be another critical question; Am I wiser than I was ten years ago? If I can’t answer this for myself then nobody else can answer it for me. This is truly my own personal responsibility. As we approach the final two weeks of Lent, there is time (14 Days) for deeper reflection, or else, as the song says, ‘it’s just another year.’ We remember, Jesus is Master/teacher and we are his disciples.
You can download this reflection here.