Archives For Easter

Dead Saturday  —  March 31, 2018


I have a hard time with Holy Saturday. A Good Friday service promises to weigh me down with my sin, the wetness of Jesus’ blood, and the distress in his voice as he cries into the darkness, “My God, why have you forsaken me?” And I can wake up Easter Sunday knowing that the planters filled with lilies, church goers shouting “He is risen indeed,” and a steaming plate of ham will draw me into a celebration of resurrection. But Saturday slips quietly in between and I’m tempted to wake up to the world as I know it, the world as normal.


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But the silence of Saturday ripples with paradox and grief. If we take the time to venture in, we can see the chaos our sin creates and feel, if just for a moment, a heaviness that makes us long for Resurrection Sundayboth Jesus’ and our own Continue Reading…

When I first saw The Tortured Christby Brazilian sculptor Guido Rocha, it didn’t ask my permission, it just went ahead and seared itself into my subconscious. Every couple of months since then, The Tortured Christ pops up, uninvited. All of the sudden he’s there, blood splattering on the carpet of my brain and his screams ricocheting off the walls. It’s rather uncomfortable. 

I’d prefer a visit from the placid Jesus–the one who’s taking his torture like a champ, the Jesus that dangles on the end of necklaces, Jesus-asleep-on-the-cross. But, this Jesus keeps showing up–skin retracting between his ribs, muscles seizing in agony–and, honestly, when he stops by, I don’t start humming worship songs or try to gaze deeply into his eyes. I want to look away.


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The truth is, there’s a lot of things I’d rather look away from–not just Rocha’s Christ–11.4 million Syrians who have been displaced from their homes. Four and half million of them eke out an existence on the border of other countries, without heat in the winter or basic health care, relying on UN food coupons to keep them just beyond the grip of starvation.   


I’d rather not notice the man who holds a plastic cup at the intersection several blocks from my house. It gets complicated to think about the addictions that might be driving him to the streets, the shattered family he represents, or the burden of what it means for me to get involved Continue Reading…