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Day forty; Keeping my word

06 Apr

 

 

 

It’s Good Friday today.

Jesus is either all bloody and bleeding on the cross, or is dead, spear to the side to verify, and been taken to the tomb.

For me, there is sorrow all around.

The streets are quiet and empty, only a few hooded figures darting furtively in and out of the shadows, through narrow alleyways, carrying information from one group to another, and back.

What happened?

So he WAS taken last night?

Where were the men?

Is he dead?

You saw?

How can this be? What are we going to do?

Saturday we will meet the other groups. We will find the women…see if we can find the men. There is talk of resurrection but the cross is still there…his blood is still on the floors and walls of Herod’s courtyard…

Tomorrow. We will find the others and see.

It’s my last day of lent. Paula. Here we are. I can see you. I know you are bringing comfort to many. I know that you are hurting.

Keeping my word.

Did I do it? Did I complete my lent? Am I free to celebrate? Break the fast?

Did I finish what I started? I remember the beginning, wanting the 40days, looking to find Jesus through Easter. I remember so clearly, 1993. A community center in Grosvenor Square, in London, I’ve been homeless and squatting for months, I’ve screwed up at college, I’ve found out I’m gay, I haven’t spoken to my parents in a year, they don’t know where I am.

I’m taking a shower in the community center – The Clubhouse – the first I’ve had in days. I walked in and asked if I could have a shower. They have snooker and young people and are getting ready to receive The Queen.

A young man, a priest, handsome, gives me a towel and asked if I want a meal after.

I’m the only black person here. I squat nearby…it’s a very posh area.

I’m in the little chapel upstairs. The stained glass was made by Robert I think…the painting on the walls are by a woman with a punk cut, pink. It’s on the roof-top and next week the Queen’s coming to open it.

The priest asked me what I do…what I want to do…and I said I’m a Pharamcologist, but I want to be a film-maker.

The BBC is up the road he says, go ask them for a camera and see if you can film the Queen for us.

There’s twelve of us here, we’ve been all night, and we’ll be up ’till service on Sunday. I’ve memorised seven themes to dedicate an ‘our father’ to, everytime I pray. I’m filled with the story of this man Jesus and what’s happening…I’m sad and amazed.

God. Love. Sacrifive. Forgiveness. Renunciation. Knowledge. Control. Surrender.

Those are the themes…the book described each one for each of the days of one week of worship – some special Christian week I don’t know which…I wonder if it’s like the Krsna’s down the street. I like them. Free lunch.

I’m a liar, generally. My life is filled with little lies. Very little ones, no harm. No harm. Yet the last time I remember feeling really free was when even little lies were not told.

Do I keep my word?

Have I kept my word?

If there is anything I’ve learned this Lent, anything that I want to hold myself to forever, it is to ALWAYS tell the truth, and to keep my word.

God help me.

 

If a man vows a vow to the Lord, or swears an oath to bind himself by a pledge, he shall not break his word. He shall do according to all that proceeds out of his mouth”. Numbers 30:2

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3 Comments

Posted by on April 6, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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3 responses to “Day forty; Keeping my word

  1. Paula Tohline Calhoun

    April 7, 2012 at 01:24

    Dear Kenny:

    On this day of darkness, I am going to offer you a gift of light. It does not come from me, only through me. That gift is the link to the following talk by Dr. Anthony Campolo. I first heard this particular speech/sermon back in 1982. It changed my perspective on many things, and continues today to bring a new birth of joy and insight – every time I think of it. It has become a favorite quotation, that comes to mind many times, along with other scripture, and even though it is not written in the Bible, per se, it is the essential message of the Gospel of Christ: “It’s Friday – but Sunday’s coming!”

    Today is Friday, but I can rejoice, and call it, truly a Good Friday, because I know that Sunday’s coming.

    This talk is just under an hour long. Please take the time to listen to the very end. It is in the last five minutes or so that he relates the story of the title.. This sermon is powerful, and humorous, and deeply moving. Tony Campolo (I have had the privilege to hear him in person) is a gifted speaker, and a brilliant man with so much to say about the Good News that God has brought to us through our Lord and Savior. As I have contemplated today all that Jesus has done for us – the one gift that it beyond all others, I have found myself thinking only that it is Friday. Even as I know that without Friday, Sunday could have never happened, I constantly need to remind myself that the ultimate outcome of Friday is SUNDAY!

    Please take the time, in your silence, to listen to this, and to absorb it, and then I want you to write to me, either via the comments here, or via e-mail: ptohlinecalhoun@gmail.com/ I am so excited to pass this on to you. I hope that it will bring as much light into your life as it has into mine. I hope that it will serve as a daily/hourly/minute-by-minute reminder that in spite of all our difficulties, in spite of our sadness, our shame, our torment – that we have both suffered over and over again – that that is because – and only because – it’s Friday, but Sunday’s coming! We really have no reason to be downtrodden – but we have every reason to rejoice – even on this day of all days.

    I am looking forward to your communication with me. I am waiting to hear.

    Thank you for holding my hand today. Thank you for walking with me these 40 days. We have at least 60 days to go – maybe we will walk many more together after that, and maybe we will each take our own journey, but I know that wherever we travel, there will be a part of us that will always be walking along the same road, because we will both have our Paraclete walking by and with us. I am more convinced than ever that we are going to meet. How about you?

    Remember – I am waiting. Right here. By the tomb where His body lies. Because now I know. He will not be there long. Sunday is coming.

    Paula

     

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