Thursday, March 27, 2008

1 Corinthians 15:41-50

I am glad to read this passage this morning. With three funerals in not many more days, and six in the last three weeks, I very much appreciate the comfort it so freely offers.

Personally, I think even our physical bodies are pretty great. They present us with so many possibilities and ways to enjoy life. When well cared for, they are beautiful, a wonder to behold. Touch is such a powerful way of conveying feeling.

Though I am not really what some would call a “touchy feely” type person, I am a very physical person. I love running, jumping, feeling strong, digging in the dirt, swimming in the water, eating watermelon and ice cream and fiery hot salsa.

So to think that our resurrection bodies are going to be even better… wow. As my generational cohorts might once have said, with genuine awe and wonder, “Far out, man.”

To be sure, I know that our present bodies have their problems, limitations, and failings. There are aches and pains, a general slowing down and dulling of the senses, sickness and disease. There is the abiding sense of loss that comes in being aware of these things. To see a loved one “lying in great weakness”, as the Prayer Books says, is to understand that as great a blessing as our bodies are, they carry a great curse as well.

So to know that not only will our new bodies be glorious in a way that our present bodies are not, but also that they will imperishable where our present bodies are perishable, is perhaps an even greater comfort still.

And the greatest comfort of all, I think, does not come so much in knowing that this applies to us. It comes in knowing that this is true of all those who we love but see no longer, those to whom we have said good bye. Though their body is “sown in weakness, it is raised in power.” That’s a promise I am holding onto, and I hope you will too.

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