Saturday, March 24, 2012

Passion Sunday Yr B - St Matthew's at 8.00

Sir, we would see Jesus.
These words were famously, carved on the inside of the pulpit at Holy Trinity Church, Cambridge, by the evangelical preacher Charles Simeon – a salutary reminder to all of us who presume to speak of our faith, that our job is, always, to get ourselves out of the way so that those who listen may encounter not the vicar on one of her hobby horses...but the Word made flesh, full of grace and truth.

Sir, we would see Jesus
At our baptisms we are christened – become Christians, little Christs...signs of his transforming presence in our lives and in our world.
When our friends and neighbours encounter us – is this their experience?
It's interesting that it was PHILIP whom the Greeks approached.
They came to him because he spoke their language and bore a Greek name.
If he wasn't actually one of them, he was nonetheless someone with whom they could identify, someone approachable, someone who seemed safe and trustworthy.
Someone who might have been their neighbour, colleague, friend.
Who better to ask?

And they asked him because they knew he was a disciple. They could see that he was serious about spending time with Jesus, becoming his friend, learning from him.
His discipleship showed.
He was different as a result.

This Lent our benefice course has explored whether or not our friends, our neighbours could spot the difference in us – whether the faith we profess has a visible impact on the way we live.
Are we more generous?
More passionately concerned for justice?
More filled with love, joy, peace?
Those are the hall marks of a life transformed by Christ.
Spot the difference!
Of course, we are works in progress...failing each and every day, but by God's grace becoming little by little more attuned to our calling as little Christs.

Sir, we would see Jesus
Just a glimpse would be enough
When Jesus is visible amazing things happen...
And Jesus is most easily seen not in our triumphs, our proud moments of achievement and celebration.
He is more truly visible in those little deaths that we experience each and every day...
Those times when we let go – of ourselves, of our own agendas, of our hopes and dreams
When we are simply overwhelmed by life and unable to flounder on in our own strength.
“Unless a grain of wheat falls to the earth and dies...”
Less of us and more of Jesus...that must, always and non negotiably, be our priority...for it is, also, the route to life.

Sir, we would see Jesus
May our lives, this Passiontide and always, point towards the one who, on the cross draws all people to himself

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