I am sitting in my kitchen going over my preparations for worship tomorrow. It is Palm/Passion Sunday. The lectionary calls for reading two entire chapters of the gospel of Mark (14-15). This typically takes about 15 minutes. So I am trying something new, perhaps biting off more than I can chew: I am going to retell the story and weave reflections into the story as proclamation for the day.
Reading and reflecting upon Jesus' suffering and death feels somehow dissonant today because it was such a wonderful day. We had a fabulous pancake breakfast at Town Point to raise funds for our mission trip this summer, followed by our Walk-a-Thon from Town Point to Jacob's Well to Trinity. It was a great day to walk 7 miles; and an even better day to walk 3.5 since Ray and I split the caring for the kids and walking responsibilities. (A true team effort.) The sun was shining, and we concluded with a picnic on the front lawn of Trinity. Between breakfast sales and sponsorships, we raised a few dollars shy of $1000.
We are going to Salem Twp. Maine to do home repair ministry in a rural community with a weak economy. Today I saw signs for the "Maine Event" which is just fun, I think.
My hope is that this trip will take us deeper into the heart of Christ, and draw us more deeply out of ourselves and into the relationships and service that Christ reveals. For it is in giving life away that we receive life. As John Wesley, the founder of Methodism said: "grace received and not passed on loses it efficacy."
As I sit here feeling so content as I read the passion narrative, I would like to hope it flows from the abiding peace that comes from focusing beyond self...because after spending a day enjoying the simple beauty of a spring day filled with beautiful people I love, its hard to know where it is flowing from... and I am not sure it really matters.