Sunday, April 5, 2015

An Easter Vigil Sermon, It Takes Place in a Garden

Easter Vigil 2015

The story begins in the garden.  

With creation.  

And the Lord God planted a garden in Eden, in the east; and there he put the man whom he had formed.  (Gn 2:8)

And, there the tree of life.  The tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  There the origins, the birthing of all creation in bird song, and grasses, in peace and companionship.  

There the calm and the introduction of our longing.  

Our yearning.

For the garden and a return to God’s vision of creation.  

For, the garden is guarded by an angel and there seems to be no way of returning.  

And, yet, we hold onto the vision. It has become our vision of possibility--born of the knowing that we are capable of such peace and such love.

And, so we try once again, to return to the garden.  

Gethsemane, where Jesus prays and the disciples sleep.

Gethsemane, where a sword is drawn and then sheathed.  

I did not lose a single one of those whom you gave me (Jn 18:9)

And, none were lost, but the One.  And, in his loss we are found.  

So that “we too might walk in newness of life”.

And, in this new covenant is bound all the old.  Every covenant leading us back to the garden.  A return to God’s vision for who we might be.  And, in that return, we are the broken vessels spewing forth the light of God’s love and acceptance.  In that return, we hold the prophet Zephaniah’s proclamation that that God will bring all of us back.

Back to the garden.

And in that garden an empty tomb.

In that garden a new life.  

In that garden an angel.  
Not an angel to guard, but an angel to send.

Go quickly and tell his disciples, “He has been raised from the dead” (Mt 28:7)

And, the whole world rejoices.  All of creation sings.  We are redeemed and made God’s children.  We have been made holy.  We are unbound.  

The world can be the garden once again.  And, we return, and we return and we return.  

Alleluia!  Alleluia!  Alleluia!

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