Thursday, April 13, 2006

church time and pastor time

So when do you prepare for Easter Sunday?

I have found it increasingly helpful for my personal spirituality to enter into the church year. The rhythms of Lent, Easter, Pentecost have nourished my soul and provided contours for my experience of God.

So in an ideal world, you walk with your church community through the events of Easter Week. You have to sit with the enormity of loss on Easter Friday if you want to catch the surprise of Easter Sunday. If you even let a peek of Easter Sunday light under your door, you are destroying the enormity of loss and pain that is the gospel of Friday.

The church community must walk through Friday to get to Sunday. So when then does the pastor and worship leader prepare? Do I trust for a fruitful Saturday and the rapid birth of all I need? Or do I start preparing for Sunday before Friday, and thus mess with personal walk through Easter?

Posted by steve at 11:17 AM


  1. “If you even let a peek of Easter Sunday light under your door, you are destroying the enormity of loss and pain that is the gospel of Friday.”

    but how do you achieve that? it’s extemely hard. that’s not even a perspective Jesus himself had, as he knew what was going to happen.

    Comment by Andrew Brown — April 13, 2006 @ 12:47 pm

  2. Just tonight my wife and I were talking about how we cannot understand Easter Sunday without first going through the experience of Good Friday. I think more than the actual day, this means the experience of suffering in your life. Going through the cross in one’s life prepares you for understanding the significance of the gospel of Easter Sunday.

    Just a few thoughts I’ve been thinking through today…

    Comment by Adam — April 13, 2006 @ 1:57 pm

  3. Adam,
    Thanks so much for your comment. My prayers are with you and Amy this Easter, than in the despair that is Friday you might feel the presence of God.

    Comment by steve — April 13, 2006 @ 9:42 pm

  4. Andrew,
    it feels like you always come at me pretty hard in these blog comments. we have very little relationship, so i am unsure how to respond.

    at the heart of christianity is the affirmation of Jesus is fully human and fully divine. as fully human, Jesus would no more know the future than you or me. i do not want to lose this tension that is at the heart of orthodox Christianity.

    Comment by steve — April 13, 2006 @ 9:46 pm

  5. I struggle with this in a little diferent context throughout the year. As a pastor/leader, I am supposed to/feel like I should be out front — “leading the way/preparing the way.” As a fellow-follower, I want to be there with them through the journey, experiencing the journey with them & watching them as they experience the journey. Trying to get too far ahead I sometimes lose the freshness that they need to experience but at other times, “having been there already,” I’m like a friend taking them to a secret place I’ve found.

    Sorry if this seems like rambling. I had a more solid thought when I began but it unfolded on me as I typed. All in all though, as a Baptist pastor who has been following the church calendar and using the Lectionary as my sermon calendar for nearly two years now, the “rhythm thing”has helped me to be able to lead and walk with my fellow-followers.

    Comment by mike — April 14, 2006 @ 1:23 am

  6. sorry, i don’t mean to come on hard. my first statement “how do we achieve that” isn’t rhetorical, it’s actually a question. i agree with your sentiment, and think it’s a good way to think! sometimes i just think out loud too..

    Comment by andrew brown — April 14, 2006 @ 9:58 am

  7. Andrew, really appreciate the clarification. “How do we achieve that” for means avoiding triumph on Easter Friday. It means knowing that the better we do Friday, the richer will be our Sunday. It means being willing to look death in the face and to offer no “but wait Sunday is coming” sentiments. It means seeking for Gods’ love amid the harsh rawness. Have a read through me Wednesday post .. .. it might help.


    Comment by steve — April 14, 2006 @ 2:44 pm

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