Christians know that Jesus was identified
in the post-resurrection appearances
by the eating of the fish and the
Breaking of the bread and
even seeing his wounds.
This morning I see that Jesus was truly
recognized in the illumination of
the times he’d had with his trusted friends
the fun they’d shared and
the pain that they all felt.
Remember the time Jesus wandered off from
the others? While meandering alone he
came upon a very key encounter
with the woman at the well,
a future evangelist.
In the re-telling of the shared stories did
they laugh until tears streamed down their faces?
Afterwards, did they cherish even
more the mundane times they
walked paths and fished together?
Did one of the guys try out telling the time
that Jesus walked on the sea and Peter steps out too,
causing them to fear a ghost as a
prank? Rather than the epiphany
of seeing the Son of God?
As present-day disciples of Jesus
How do we frame the stories so that the true
identity of Jesus the Christ
is revealed to us and
in us this holy day?
Sharing the Narrative of Life’s Stories
For months, the man who thinks himself old while dwelling on death and dying, becomes young once again. The laughter of youth transforms his face. For two hours, long buried stories erupt from his memories and are shared with family. These stories seem too preposterous to be true. Nonetheless, I remember the stories from earlier decades when they were told around rustic picnic tables with giggling toddlers running to and fro.
It was an age of pranks played on one another by young men. Even though the paid job was very physical, the pranks took much more energy than what was asked of them. Everyone participated and these forty young men bonded one to another in their survival of the pranks. Looking back, they laugh at the stories of times they had energy to spare and did more than stare at a screen watching videos that demonstrate how to live someone else’s life.
No doubt, the narrative of how each of our characters were formed involves grit and not waiting for life to come to us. We did it through caring for our buddies and not letting anything stand in the way. Whether or not particular stories are remembered, surely the cackles of laughter will be.
I like to think of the human Jesus and his disciples that way. Hearing stories that lead to new life, mirroring the listening of the living God who hears our prayers, and causes good to come out of evil.
The transforming power of Christ lives on in our lives! May we feel it rise up in us as we contemplate how we will live out the rest of this gift of life.
Well-being and healing to you, dear ones,
Rev. Marta Wheeler