Tuesday, April 19, 2011

In Between

Holy week is a strange beast.  You begin with a celebration, but the celebration of Palm Sunday is undercut with a tension of what is to come.  That tension is present especially in the Biblical narrative.  Jesus enters Jerusalem in a parade and he enters the city through a gate that is prophesyed to be the one that the Messiah will enter through.  The Romans are on hand and tense for any sign that the Jews will use the holiday to begin and uprising.  The Jewish leaders are afraid that Jesus will do just that, and they will be punished too. 

And so Palm Sunday is full of hope and tension.  And then there is a three day pause in the action.  There are lots of discussions in the temple.  Legal and theological debates, questions of Jesus, but everyone is holding their breath and wondering who will make the next move.  They are in between.  Only Jesus himself knows how this will end, everyone else is in the dark.

On the Tuesday of Holy Week I sit in the in between.  Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter are coming.  They come each year, a well-known and well-loved story.  Story in the sense of being drawn in and hearing it anew each year despite my familiarity with it, but each year my experience is colored by my world.  I sit in the tension of knowing what is coming and not knowing how it will affect me this year.  The tension of knowing and not knowing, of having heard and hearing anew.  The tension of knowing the love and grace that I've been given and needing to know it again, and again, and again.  Over and over.

What new messages might I hear in Holy Week this year?  What do I need to learn about grace and God's love?  I sit in between, waiting.  I am mindful of those around me and wonder what their Holy Week moments may be?  Will it be the servant love of a foot washing that shows them God's love this week?  Will it be a tear for a Savior giving his life for ours?  Will it be a joy of knowing that death never triumphs?  Or will be more subtle than that and perhaps somehow I have a chance myself to show them God's love this week?

In between, I sit and keep watch: knowing and not knowing, a paradox of tension and hope, in between.


amy said...

I never knew the power of a foot washing until I had my very first mission trip. We did one at the end, and I cried so hard. Holy week makes me reflect on the "haves" and "have nots" and how really un important some of the stressers make me.

Then, by Friday I'm hurting for His pain and just beyond thankful for His love.

I cannot fathom what it must have been like to have been there.

Sabrina said...

I have a new job, but I am so excited to have these upcoming Holy days off from work. I didn't request it, but the powers above made it possible! I need to be rejuvenated with life and hope! Wishing you a wonderful and blessed Easter week!