I sealed my eyes, clasped your hand with sinew so resolute
I would not keel.
I couldn’t see, didn’t believe I could find my own way
in the blinding light.
My grip tired. My eyes craved dawn. I let loose the ligature,
unlatched my eyes.
My urgency was not to see, not trail beyond where I stood,
but unravel in my own Being.
I stand as myself next to you, equal, warmed and gentled
from Within, well equipped for the free fall.
I marvel at my ridiculous dependence, over a half-century, upon a carefully constructed lectionary to tell me the Story. A Story offered that is only a piece of a very large and luscious meal.
Yes, it is my own undoing, or laziness, or fear. I didn’t push myself early enough to overcome it, to be brave in, or to free myself to look back and forward, to question. Somehow I needed to learn to trust the Voice Inside.
I learned the hard way, or maybe it was just a longer route. I was growing my wings stronger. I didn’t understand that they could be built during the free fall.
Even so, I need to release the guilt, the shame, the self-condemnation. There is no time for that.
On Friday I started my day with Street Psalms‘ reflection of Sunday’s gospel reading in their Word From Below weekly reflection, Brigand’s of the Lord. It is always good stuff. Oh, the thieves on both sides of the cross – “gang members.” I encourage you to read it. But I wasn’t seeing clearly enough yet.
Nadia Bolz-Weber‘s quote from a review of her new book about the meaning of the Cross and sinners, fell right into my lap. It was another way to understand Fr. Scott’s Celtic Conversation asking us what it means to be blessed and how that works with the crucified Christ. And still, I wasn’t satisfied.
So, I began again. I reread the 1st and 2nd readings and the Psalm responses. Then I read all of Psalm 33 in the ESV and then in the Message. I usually don’t use the Message for the Psalms, but yesterday wouldn’t let me rest until I did.
In a last attempt I went back to the Gospel of Mark in the Message, but this time I didn’t stop at the end of the chosen lectionary verse 45 where I was told to STOP. I read to the end of the chapter. Then I went back and read what came before.
I am learning to let go of finding the “right” or “only” way. I realize that I can use experience, wisdom, and knowledge of others to help me see. But in the end, I must stand alone on my own feet, open my eyes and ears, and let the free fall continue to build my wings even greater.
How does this relate to the readings?
Simply, it is not my place to put myself in or request a seat of judgment. I must see that Jesus is not about judgment.
I must see our Holy One from within, seeing the Light in what I can do, am called to do, been given the gifts to do. Do you see?
And remember the root command – love one another.
There is no room for judges here, only lovers.