(April 10, 2015) With Spring finally in the air, there couldn’t be a more perfect time to tune into the blessing of our bodies.
Now, some of you may be looking in the mirror, contemplating swimsuit season and the effects of a winter’s worth of hibernation in the company of Ben and Jerry, and are thinking, “Pastor’s crazy.”
But it’s true. The Good Lord gave us these bodies for a reason. And that reason is to use them to savor life and to use them for God’s purposes. Unfortunately somewhere along the way, we became so ashamed of our bodies that today we’re often divorced from them, uncomfortable when we think of them, especially in church. That’s probably because it’s through our bodies that we experience pleasure, but if there’s one sure human trait, it’s the tendency to wretched excess – “Too much of a good thing is still too much.” For a long time, we’ve been taught that our bodies are the source of sin.
This Sunday, however, we see in the Gospel just how important our bodies are to being wholly connected with Jesus. This Sunday Jesus appears among his disciples who are in a panic because they think they’re seeing a ghost. And he proves to them that he is with them, body and soul, by a very human act. Come to think of it, if the body weren’t so important in being a whole person, then why did Jesus bother to rise as his whole self? Wouldn’t it have been sufficient for only his spirit to return? But of course, the Jesus who returned was the “real deal,” body and soul. This Sunday we’ll explore the moments we experience God with our whole selves. We’ll come to peace with our bodies; explore how our human touch ignites in others a knowledge that God is, indeed, among us.
In the meantime, tune into your body. Smell that distinctive April air. Take off your shoes and feel the new grass, and hold a handful of earth in your hand. This week when you hear birdsong or see a “V” of returning geese in the sky, give thanks for all that is given you through your body, and be glad. (And…stay away from the mirror!) Pastor Pat