I really should be writing the Easter sermon...and I do have a lot of notes and a pretty good idea of what I want to say. I'll get to that in a moment. First, an update--it's been two weeks, how did that happen?
Strong Heart was called to the congregation where she was candidating--no huge surprise there. I pleased for her, although amazed at her energy. She'll be there only on weekends, driving almost three hours every Friday night and another three hours Sunday night; her weeknights will be taken up with preparing sermons, Bible studies, worship etc, and she's continuing a project with Sister City church.... I would not be able to do it, even when I'm healthy!
I'm beginning to work back into the community groups, committees, etc. People are wonderful, bringing me up to speed, asking me to take on tasks again, re-integrating me into the group. I'm able to put more energy into sermon prep and worship planning, too--both of which make me feel that I'm earning my salary again!
Radiation treatments are going well--I'm halfway through, at #17 (out of 33). My skin looks tanned, but no burns or soreness, except for a couple of "hot spots" near my collarbone. I've been using Burt's Bees Radiance Body Lotion, emu oil and Glaxo Base Lotion (which seems to be a Canadian product; it's what my tattoo artist suggested after my tattoo for healing). No fatigue, either, which I had worried about. I have ordered the compression sleeve for lymphedema--I get to have a purple one! Did you know they come in colors?
Easrer sermon... I'm torn between two ideas and I'm trying to reconcile them so I can use both. On the one hand, I read an Easter meditation by Gene Robinson (on textweek.com) about the stone being already rolled away, and all we have to do is look up to see the stone is already gone. The other is that we all experience mini-resurrections in our lives--how do we live out that sense of joy at those restorations of hope?
Well, the stone rolled away is what allows for the sense of resurrection--the way is opened for the new life, new life. Gene Robinson tells the story of his own rehabilitation from alcohol abuse; his substance abuse was a rock in his way, and yet it wasn't until he "looked up"--looked to God--that he found the stone was gone. He says he should have known that was possible because this had happened before, when the stone was his sexuality. Then, too, the stone was rolled away and he experienced resurrection and the new life of being who he was, openly, honestly.
So I think I will use his story, and my own (in a more minor way) of recovering after chemo to illuestrate resurrection and stones rolling away.
To bring it home, so to speak, I also want to talk about the fear of the disciples--the fear of change, of that new, resurrected life. Gene Robinson talks about the fear of th disciples--if Jesus really had been resurrected, then it would change everything. And of course it does--so what do we do with our fear of change, especially when it holds us back from a resurrection?
It hasn't quite jelled yet, but I want to get something on paper--I can always play with it later. Suggestions welcome!