Thursday, April 09, 2009

Jeremiah 20:7-11, Psalm 102, 1 Corinthians 10:14-17, 11:27-32, John 17:1-26

He blessed and broke the bread, he poured the wine
Arise, let us go from here
No more with us ever share fruit of the vine
Arise, let us go from here
He’s washing our feet, he’s cleansing us all,
He speaks of a traitor (we feel appalled,
Sober or stunned). Now we heed his call
Arise, let us go from here.

So down from that upper room, into the street
Love each other as I have loved you
Afraid, in the dark, of each stranger we meet
Love each other as I have loved you
We creep past walled vineyards, beneath olive trees
Still listening, still wondering at what this night means
And where we are going, what longing appease
Love each other as I have loved you.

So here in Gethsemane set the night guard
I have much more to say to you
Some rest in the shadows, the waiting is hard
I have much more to say to you
He prays in the moonlight, he sweats in the cold
What dangers await us, what crisis unfold
When others discover us, daylight behold?
I have much more to say to you.

He meets me, and all of us, in the streets where we live and walk. His challenge, his mandate to us is to think about unthinkable acts of love, and to practice them not randomly but with his purpose. He calls his a new commandment, new because no one had ever perceived that loving one another with no conditions whatsoever could actually be God’s intention for us.

Look upon the calloused, aching, broken trod-through-the-grime-and-sweat feet, and not only not look away, but caress and care and love them in all their cracked reality. Our hands on filthy feet are his instruments of grace, the means that he chooses to make each other fit to stand before him at the last day. And our feet may yet also walk the road of sacrifice.

--MLB

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