Friday, March 11, 2011

Lenten Apocalyptic

One of the Readings for this past Ash Wednesday was From Joel. Something about the urgency and upheaval Joel saw coming in the world and which Joel names as the Day of the Lord, struck a chord with the upheaval in the middle east the continuing strife and wrangling in our civic and political processes. I have been lead into a bit of Lenten apocalyptic. I was wrestling to articulate this Lenten unveiling in my Ash Wednesday Sermon Apocalyptic as seeing in the upheavals in our lives and the worlds as revelations, as those things that expose truth, and proclaiming the coming of the Day of the Lord. Thus leading to repentance and preparation to receive God's judgment and transformation, that is salvation.

I hesitate to say much more. There is a mystery here, there is something profoundly sacred and thus something that can be profaned. Apocalyptic, God's unveiling has been seen as God doing the destruction that reveals, and that brings the world to its big destructive end, like the lair of a villain whose finally been exposed. Like bond or the super hero those in the know somehow make it out of the imploding lair unscathed, but not so lucky are others. Though there is probably something to this image: the destruction of the villains lair is due to some flaw in the villain, or the plan or the operation of some device that brings everything crashing down. There is in our current state of affairs, what we might call this present age, or "The World" and in humanity a fatal flaw. We and the world aren't as we should be. This is the Christian story. this is why there is Ash Wednesday, Lent, Good Friday, and Easter.

The earth quake in Japan, in conjunction with so much else that is going on in these past several months in the world, held my attention as I thought of Joel's and the prophet's (like Amos) Day of the Lord and their poetic and prophetic utterances. In these confluence of astounding and devastating, and even hopeful but staggering events of recent months is there something to be uncovered, is something being opened up to us and are we to repent and open ourselves up to what is coming?