The season of Easter continues, but the excitement fades as we tuck Jesus safely into the future, anticipating his return, (but not too quickly, or he’ll spoil the fun). For many of us, the step after resurrection is the ascension which separates us from God’s Messiah and makes us settle into a very long wait.
This year we mark Earth Day as an observance that spans three days – April 20-22. So, it is more appropriately “Earth Days.” Given that a day is measured as one rotation of the earth, there are really 365 “Earth Days” each year. Perhaps if we thought about it that way, if we took time each day to note our dependence upon this spinning sphere that holds life as we know it, the earth would be in less trouble.
In the first three months of 2021, 126 mass shootings took place leaving 148 dead and 485 wounded. Last week, in a surreal incident, another black man was shot to death just ten miles from where the George Floyd Murder Trial is taking place. The best response available? “Oops. Thought it was a Taser.” Violence. Death. Fear. These are the perverse “values” of our society."
At a recent staff meeting we were discussing the progression of vaccination across the country. A number of staff members shared conversations with people who had said, in effect, “I’m not getting the vaccine. Jesus will protect me.” I was reminded of an old story.
These days we pass through a temperature check point at the dentist office, we pass through a TSA check when we board a plane, and some of us try to pass by the sweets in the grocery store because they are so tempting. One thing I will not pass is away. I hear people talk about the death of a loved one as that person having “passed away” or just dropping the word “away” and saying, “Uncle Joe passed.” This seems to be getting more common. I find myself increasingly uncomfortable with such euphonism.