Ours is an incarnational faith. The word was made flesh and became one of us in Jesus, who was a flesh and bone human being. Yes, he embodied the Divine, but we can’t deny his humanity. The holiness of human bodies, made in the image of God, is something I think our human family has lost sight of in recent years. Voices echo from our neighbors, family and friends as so many have been misused, discarded, disregarded, and abused.
- Immigrants and refugees in America seek sanctuary and value as our neighbors, co-workers and friends;
- Many girls and women have responded #MeToo and #TimesUp to a culture of unequal pay, misogyny, and assault;
- People who are Black and Brown-skinned have struggled in this country to be seen and heard as God’s beloved #BlackLivesMatter
- Students and teachers are horrified at the increased gun violence in schools across America, demanding protection and reform #NeverAgain
- People who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer (LGBTQ) seek welcome from the church that has historically been experienced by many as an instrument of trauma and exclusion.
Now seems to be a kairos moment.
Kairos (καιρός) is an ancient Greek word meaning the right, critical, or opportune moment. Contrast this with the other Greek word for time, chronos (χρόνος), which refers to chronological time.
Several times a day, I check my phone or watch to see what time it is – that’s chronos time. It’s a bit more difficult to determine when it’s Kairos time. There’s no clock for that, or an app on my smart phone to consult. Kairos time is what some call “God’s time” – and my friend Roxanne always reminds me, God is never early, but always arrives just at the right time.
Now seems to be one of those times. While God could have resurrected Christ as a disembodied spirit, he was resurrected in bodily form.
Although the doors were shut, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.” Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it in my side. Do not doubt but believe.” –John 20:26b-27
God has the power to restore life and destroy sin and death once and for all. But resurrection isn’t just for the dead, but also for the dying, for those who suffer, for all who carry within their bodies the scars that cause them to struggle to possess even a sliver of hope and dignity in this life. Resurrection is not just for the dead, but for the living. The promise of resurrection is not just for our souls, but our bodies as well.
The ELCA has drafted a Social Statement on Women and Justice which can be found here: http://www.elca.org/womenandjustice. (Responses are requested to the ELCA by September 30, 2018.) It seeks to serve as a discussion guide to issues relating to sexism and patriarchy in our society and the church. Such a social statement, when adopted, can be the basis on which we, as the church, change our behavior to honor and care for all people toward an ethic of full inclusion.
Pastor Julie Wright