Happening Now Blog

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Wednesday Message

In the animated movie "UP", Ellie and Carl meet as children sharing a common interest in adventure and exploration. From their first days on through all the stages of their life they nurtured a dream of visiting "Paradise Falls" in South America, the unexplored frontier made famous by their explorer hero and his canine companions.

Soon after their marriage they set up a savings account in a big, empty water-cooler jar into which they put all their spare change. The purpose of this account was to fund their journey to South America, to realize their goal of visiting Paradise Falls.

However life intervened again and again. Essential auto repairs, storm damage to the roof of their home, illness and other needs forced them to break open the jar time and again. Each jar broken open sustained their life in the moment, but pushed back their dream of Paradise Falls.

This coming Sunday's gospel reading is the story of Mary breaking open the jar of costly perfume at a dinner for Jesus a week before he was killed. We're getting close now. Next Sunday is Passion Sunday, the Sunday of the palms, remembering Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem, four days before the last supper with the disciples, five days before Jesus' death and a week before Mary Magdalene would announce the empty tomb.

In the reading Mary opens the jar, lotions Jesus' tired feet and dries the feet with her hair. This is Mary, the sister of Martha and Lazarus. Mary is the one who from the beginning grasped the mystery of God's Word alive in Jesus Christ, bathing in his teaching while Martha prepared a meal as she does again in this week's reading.

Again she is caught in the mystery of the moment, expressing her love and her grief without words, beyond words, in her beautiful and impractical actions. Jesus pulls her actions into the timelessness of God's realm reminding the disciples ahead of time that she is anointing his body for burial.

Like Carl and Ellie's jar in the movie, Mary's jar holds more than it seems. Both hold life: in nurturing by soothing the needs of the moment; and in embracing the timelessness of purposeful dreams.

As we draw closer to Holy Week we are immersed in the timelessness of God's realm. We recount the last days of Jesus, remember the events of particular significance in the biblical witness and draw the experience into our time and space.

In the end, Carl makes it to Paradise Falls. Ellie is no longer alive, but her dreams and her purpose live on and she becomes real to Carl again as he lives their shared dream.

In the end we live in story of an empty tomb, another container which holds nurture in the moment and purpose for today, tomorrow and the next day,

along the way.

PD

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THIS WEEK

Wednesday 5:30 pm Lenten Soup/bread Supper
                    6:30 pm Holden Evening Prayer Service

Thursday    12:00 pm  All Church Luncheon @ Elmer's Restaurant

Saturday     8:30 - 12:00 pm Spring Cleanup

Sunday       8:30 & 11:00 am Worship Service
                   11:00 am Little Lambs SS
                   12:00 pm Volunteer Meeting for Community Easter Egg Hunt

Scrip order Sunday, April 7th

Community Easter Egg Hunt
April 13th
10:00 am
Children 0-8 years old
Bring your own basket