Saturday, April 07, 2007

'Do I love or know Jesus?”

'Do I love or know Jesus?”

I wrote that in 1990 or so; as part of my seminary homework.

Don't worry; it wasn't a huge crisis of faith.

Or was it.

The amazing profesor Don Joy, had assigned us Walter Wangerin's novel “The Orphean Passages,” and asked us to reflecton it on our journals.

I remember he circled my confession in red.

But not to dock my grade for "unbelief" ; but to say
"Wow, you really processed the novel appropriately."

Wangerin wrote of a pastor who got up to preach on Good Friday, and suddenly realized the gravity of all Jesus went through on what we call Good Friday, and thus…. couldn’t say a word. Sometimes we have to stay in Friday, even if it feels Sunday is not coming.I wrote in my journal after reading how affected the pastor was; “Do I love or know Jesus?”

In other words, had I ever parked at Good Friday long enough to know that Jesus died?

Had I ever been at a loss for words over that?

We celebrated Good Friday 2007 yesterday without Fred.

He never missed our Good Friday service.

He had a valid excuse: he was within hours of death, in a coma.

And met Jesus face to face hours after the service, today; Easter Eve.

Fred so ministered to me over the years, though he proudly bragged on me as his pastor.

But this is the guy who enrolled in YWAM at age 60!
I miss him. I need that.
"We quote Romans 8:28 too tritely and too soon," I preached last Good Friday on Psalm 22.

My seminary confession was part hyperbole; part true...maybe even in part giving the professor what he wanted to hear. I didn't really doubt the veracity of my salvation.

And I sill don't.

But perhaps I should question its tenacity and tenure.

I grieve that I don't grieve enough.

Maybe I'll read my sermon from last Good Friday here; perhaps I''ll seeof I can find that seminary journal; no doubt I'll re-read Saint Juancho's amazing Good Friday in Chile experience here..
If I don't, I may never be big, bold; named and unashamed to pray the prayer she prayed at the Good Friday service she attended:
“Please, do not let me go, ever. You are all I have, and one way or another, it has always been about You and me. All I ask is that you have mercy on me, lead me, guide me and maybe, one day, allow me to fulfill my true calling. I don’t know where life will take me from now on, but I do ask that I be, at least in the smallest bit, worthy of Your calling. I don’t want to stumble. Don’t ever let me go.”

Maybe I'll go to bed in prayer to know and love Jesus for the first time.

After all, I am a pastor now. Tomorrow is Easter. I DO have to have something to say.

Or do I?

1 comment:

  1. I grieve that I don't grieve enough.

    So many of us feel this way. I was so touched by this, and related to it on so many levels. Thank "you".


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