A reflection on John 19:31-42 (The Burial of Jesus)
Going to the grocery store has been the reminder for me the world is in disarray. I am an introvert so staying at home for weeks at a time with my family is a good experience. Outside of the news I watch, only periodically to maintain my mental health, I feel safe and secure at home. One Saturday though, I went shopping at a Fred Meyer. I walked into the entryway of the grocery store on a Saturday afternoon and a lone employee was wiping down carts with sanitizing wipes. That moment felt so surreal because this was a time when the store was normally packed with shoppers. It was lonely and barren. Shopping that day felt like grieving – grieving normalcy and security.
I imagine our collective experience this lent gives us a small sense of what Jesus’s followers were experiencing after his death. Some of us are struggling more than others through this pandemic and some of us are grieving the loss of loved ones just as the early Christians were grieving Jesus’s death. This lent has felt so different and strange. This is the season of grief for our Lord and here we are experiencing a societal grief. So, this Good Friday, we not only grieve the sin that caused our Lord’s suffering and death, we also grieve what this illness has brought to our communities. We grieve the families who are struggling with shelter in place, health care, grocery and warehouse workers who are risking their lives, children at home for whom school was the only safe place to be, people who are sick and dying alone, and families who are grieving and unable to collectively meet for funerals. This is not an easy place to be and it was not an easy place for early Christians. As we remember our Lord’s death this Good Friday, we also remember that God was with those early Christians through that confusion, grief and turmoil. And She is with us through this confusion, grief, and turmoil. Like a loving Mother, God grieves with us and surrounds us with love and hope. We know how Jesus’s story ends but the ending for the corona virus is unclear. However, we will be able to find new meaning and joy again. Until then, we can turn to God when sadness and fear threaten to overcome us.
In Jesus name, Amen
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