May 16, 2021
... I cannot help but me mindful of the liturgical moment in which we find ourselves. We are in that 7th Sunday of Easter, in the time between the Ascension of our Lord into heaven and the descending of the Holy Spirit upon the apostles, upon the ministers, making the church the church and saying ‘it is time.” And so liturgically and actually we find ourselves in that liminal time of transition. We all know that life has changed, and what it has changed into being has not yet unfurled.
We hear in that first chapter of Acts, in the time between Ascension and Pentecost that this the time that the disciples are looking around at each other to see, okay, if it is now on us, who are going to be the ministers, who will step up and be the leaders? Who is going to take charge, for it is going to take a team, and it’s got to be a whole team. We cannot be one person down on this. Will it be Joseph called Barsabbas or Mathias? Will it be ______ or _____. (to be clear we are not casting lots for ministry leadership, though we are having a ministry discernment retreat in June).
... Life has changed, not ended. It is time to unfurl. This summer is a time to shake it out and prune what needs pruning and plant what needs planting and figure out what it will look like to be church. Jesus has ascended and God has given us this ministry, this church...
And so it being between Ascension and Pentecost, I want to share with you about one of my favorite stained glass windows... what I love most about the window is that it looks like Jesus is standing on a sack of potatoes. Now, I’m fairly confident that they are supposed to be clouds, but they were brown and they looked like potatoes. And so I title that window the Ascension of Jesus and the holy potatoes.
Now, if you think about, is that not what is happens in the Ascension. Jesus is going up.. and he is leaving behind a bunch of holy potatoes and passing them off and saying “hot potato.” It is now you. This is now yours. And you’ve got to move in mission. Keep it going. It is your turn. You are holding it. … the ascension of Jesus and holy potatoes.
Friends, I offer you this image for that is where we are today in this liminal moment. I have missed you. And there are some potatoes here for you. There is some ministry here for you. And God in Jesus Christ has given you ministry. You are the church. Lord, it is time. Life has changed and we’re about to change some lives.