Fifth Sunday of Lent – Cycle B
Reflecting on John 12: 20-33
Everybody clings to stuff. We cling to our mothers on the first day of kindergarten. We mark off our sacred chair, or crayon box, or the line of demarcation in our shared bedrooms. This is mine. You’re not allowed to touch this, or borrow that, or go beyond this point.
Winter makes its mark on us. We pull our coats tighter, and tie our scarves close to our necks. The wind howls, the bare trees stand as silent witness to death. The earth, cold as iron, closes up and offers no hint of the miracle going on just underneath.
The grain of wheat tries to cling too. Hidden in darkness and cold, it tries to hold on to its color and shape. The baby, safe and warm, clings to the womb. But oh, what wondrous life the Master Designer has encoded in us. The grain breaks open—painful death! The baby pushes out of the womb―terrifying! And then comes the Great Reveal: we were never meant to stay a grain of wheat, or a child in the womb.
Staying where we are just doesn’t fit the pattern that God set up in order for us to thrive. That grain of wheat won’t feed the world if it’s allowed to cling. If seeds don’t die, then birds and insects and animals and humans can’t live. If a baby remains in the womb, mother and child will die. The DNA God imprinted in us requires that we not hold on forever. God has greater plans.
We cling to this life because it’s all we know. And yet, season after season, God tells a different story. Keep your spring clothes handy. Resurrection is afoot.
What things in me have to die in order for me to live more fully?
Kathy McGovern ©2018
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