Readings for 5th Sunday in Lent
Ezekiel 37.1-14,, Romans 8.6-11; and John 11:1-45
Thursday 30 March
Patripassianism is a grand word. It refers to the doctrine that in the sufferings of Jesus Christ God the Father also suffered. There’s more to it than this of course, like there are more angels on the head of a pin than you can care to count, and technically, if you go in for this kind of stuff it’s a heresy. Theologians can pass hours on this kind of thing of course, but in Jn 11:35 we read ‘Jesus wept’ and for me at least, if all we can see and know of God, we see and know in Jesus, then God wept and continues to weep as he walks around this world.
My father cried, he cried as he approached his death, he cried out of concern for those he loved, and he cried because he was leaving them.
As I get older, I find it easier to cry. I can cry for what has been, what could have been, and what there is. I cry for my grandchildren’s future. I cry not because, I’m a cry baby, over-soft and sentimental, but like Jesus, I sense a deep sorry at the heart of things that threatens and sometimes seems to overwhelm the deeper joy. In Helen Waddell’s novel Peter Abelard, Thibault reaches out and touches the dead rabbit in Peter’s hand and says, as he stroked his long ears, “Old lop ears, maybe this is why he died”.
Prayer: Lord, in my tears and laugher, in the tears and laughter of those around me, help me to recognised your tears and suffering then and as you watch the world today. So you share may I share. Amen