Sunday, March 24, 2013

Liturgy and Duplicity - Palm Sunday

We came into the sanctuary singing, waiving our palm branches and declaring "Hosanna, Save Us!" There was joy. Ten minutes later,  we read about the betrayal of Christ, and we yelled out "Crucify Him! Release Barabbas!" Our Deacon said "You might well be wondering what happened. You might feel jarred, and I urge you not to rush past that feeling." One of the things that I find most freeing about liturgy is that it allows me space to bring so many of the facets of my relationship with God. Because I can, indeed, in one morning, enter joyfully into the reality that Christ is King and I can turn my back on Him, cursing. I find the liturgy creates space for many sides of my nature as a sinful believer.

I find that when I have space to acknowledge my own frailty and failing that it is easier to choose to live in love. When I can honestly acknowledge my own inclinations towards evil and selfishness, it is easier to make the choice to turn from them. Previously, I felt a need to eradicate them and there was a tyrannical element to this need. I felt I had to make it so that there was no evil in me to turn from, so I found myself focusing on the sin. When I can see my sin for what it is it gives me the space to acknowledge that it is mine and that I am in some way bound to it, and that I need Christ in order to be free.

And I do. Come, Lord Jesus, and take away the sins of the world. The body of Christ, broken for me. Thanks be to God. The blood of Christ, spilled for me. Thanks be to God. 

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