March 10, 2013


"Rejoice with Jerusalem and be glad for her, all you who love her; rejoice greatly with her, all you who mourn over her." Isaiah 66:10, NIV

It's Laetare Sunday, a name which means almost nothing to most American Protestants. Laetare is the Latin word for 'rejoice'.

In the midst of the contemplation of our sins and mortality of Lent, Laetare Sunday reminds us of the words of John the Baptist, "Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world."

A Sunday to rejoice, in the midst of our repentance. After all, what reason would we have to repent were it not for His love bringing our redemption?

Repentance. Metanoia. Not only a time to regret our own actions, but a time to forgive the actions of others. And also to receive forgiveness.

A time of breaking down walls; walls of guilt, fear, and anger in our hearts.

A time to recognize our mutual kinship.

A time of hope, hope for new beginnings and renewed relationship with Christ and each other.

A time to change, changing ourselves and the way we treat ourselves and each other.

A time to be grateful.

Looking to Good Friday, when Christ said, "It is finished."
The price of our redemption paid in full.

Looking to Easter Sunday when He rose from Death's prison.
Sin and Death defeated.

Looking to Pentecost, when He ascended to The Father, bringing all of us to God.
His adopted brothers and sisters.

Looking to right now, to cast away chains of self and tear down walls of separation between each other.
Our new family, right here, right now.

Right now, we are His body, His bride, His kingdom.


"Rejoice with Jerusalem and be glad for her, all you who love her; rejoice greatly with her, all you who mourn over her. For you will nurse and be satisfied at her comforting breasts; you will drink deeply and delight in her overflowing abundance.
For this is what the LORD says: “I will extend peace to her like a river, and the wealth of nations like a flooding stream; you will nurse and be carried on her arm and dandled on her knees.
As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you; and you will be comforted over Jerusalem.”" Isaiah Ch. 66, v. 10-13

Rejoicing, in the midst of regret, sorrow, grief, and fear.

We rejoice in this time of looking towards His death, burial, and resurrection.
We rejoice because we realize that we already have what He promised us in this time of repentance.
We rejoice because we belong to Him, and in belonging to Him, we belong to each other.

We rejoice for the past, redeemed, forgiven, and made new. We rejoice for the future,  for the promise of living fully in His presence. We rejoice for the present as we begin to realize that, in Him, the past and the future are right now.

Rejoice, indeed.

No comments:

Post a Comment