Lent 4: Blessed are the embraced

March 13, 2013

2013 CMF Lenten Beattitudes

Lent 1: Blessed are those who make space

Lent 2: Blessed are the decentered

Lent 3: Blessed are those who leave it

Lent 4: Blessed are the embraced

On Sunday Rachel Smith preached a thoughtful sermon on the Parable of the Prodigal Son, which is really a parable about two prodigal sons, the younger and the older.  Using Rachel’s definition of prodigal = reckless spender, the father of the parable is also a prodigal.  He recklessly spends his honor and love on his sons who, each in their own way, struggle to accept it.

One of the conversations Rachel and I had during the week was the challenge of shedding new light on a familiar story.  We already know it.  Except that we don’t, which is why we keep revisiting the same themes over and over again in the church.  Lent comes around every year.  We hear often the phrase, “God love you.”  We hear again the story of a father sprinting to greet his wayward son, throwing his arms around him and planning a homecoming party before the son can even finish the excuses he’s been rehearsing in his mind as to why he left in the first place.

One more time: We are loved and embraced from the very beginning, for who we are, not for anything we do.  We do good because we are loved, not in order to be loved.  Gospel truth.  Blessed are the embraced – which is everyone.  Just not everyone knows it already.

This Sunday, Lent 5: Blessed are the available.


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