Sunday, April 6, 2014

Fifth Sunday of Lent, April 6, 2014

                     “Lazarus, come out!”

                                          Jesus of Nazareth from John 11:43

One of my favorite movies is The Shawshank Redemption.  It is a story of Andy Dufresne played by Tim Robbins who ends up serving time for two murders he did not commit.

As the innocent man who brings light to those in the prison - even suffering on their behalf - he represents a Christ figure in the film.

You see the Christ image even
on the movie poster with the arms
extended out as he faces the light.
At the turning point for Andy in the movie, he is speaking to his friend Red played by Morgan Freeman. Andy is telling him about a place on the Pacific Ocean down in Mexico.

He states that the Mexicans say the Pacific Ocean holds no memory and that is someplace he would like to go: a warm place with no memory.

He tells Red that he could use a friend like him down there someday.  Red tells him that he doesn't think he could even make it on the outside.  As he admits this dark secret to Andy, he then begins to berate him because the whole idea seems ridiculous - a pipe dream.

Andy then says that it comes down to one thing: "Get busy living or get busy dying."

In today's lectionary reading of the Gospel, we have the story of the raising of Lazarus from the dead.  The wonderful thing about this miracle is that it can be taken literally or it can be applied metaphorically to our lives.  There are places where we have been busy dying.  These places sometimes become like caves to us.  They are dark and they smell like death and no one can come to us there.

No one dares come except the Christ.

Hear the words of Jesus, "Lazarus, come out!"  Put your own name in the sentence.

As Jesus states in verse 25, "I am the resurrection and the life."

It's time to get busy living.

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