Recently I’ve heard a lot of theology about all things “Jesus” and like most things good, I am finding that the simple things are quite often the most profound. The more I complicate things the more convoluted they seems to become in my mind. I’m a details guy. I get caught up in them, I dwell in them; quite often I falter because of them.
So this Maundy Thursday I am choosing to return things back to simple. Rather than dwelling upon the minutiae surrounding me, I’m going to do my best to turn to the a more simple analogy for Jesus. Sure, the vastness of God; the extraordinary nature of God may boggle our minds if we try too hard to understand what He is doing. I for one can’t comprehend it. But today, as I descend with Jesus to the Cross I’m keeping it simple.
Holy Thursday must have felt like an ordinary but peculiar day as Jesus prepped for his death. He told people that He was about to die and be resurrected. He told his friends in a way that not only would they remember but also in a way that they could represent in the Seder meal. Jesus shared his story that was, and is, and is to come through what was at that time a 4,000 year old tradition in the Passover Seder. While such strange events were taking place, something thousands of years old was yet again happening. As ordinary as summer ice cream.
I recall my grandfather’s last days. The things that we focused upon were the same things that he had done for his whole life. While many would have finished a bucket list, he was content to eat ice cream and be with his family. Such a profound way to go and yet so simple. Jesus must have seen his numbered days likewise as something to be cherished with those that he loved.
This was no coincidence. This was to plan…because indeed Jesus was the fullness of the God’s Grace as represented through the Seder. He was both RE-membering the Seder and RE-presenting the Seder story through His life and His story. His story was the story. In what must have only been jaw-dropping to his friends, Jesus was RE-presenting all that was salvation-history: Israel’s struggles, Israel’s groaning, Israel’s emancipation, Israel’s inauguration.
While Jesus was becoming and is becoming God’s fullness for God’s creation the Seder-reality and the fullness of Eucharist-reality echo like timeless waves of sound crashing upon the limits of dimensionality. Never ceasing; yet ultimate. Never changing; yet ever changing. Always coming while having already arrived.
Who needs a bucket list any greater than sharing a meal with loved ones (as has always been the case)? May Maundy Thursday remind us of our Seder realities in such a way that leaves us with no other choice but to re-member and re-present Christ to all for all. In such a profound reality, it begins and ends with breaking bread, with raising a glass of wine; with sharing a meal. Its that simple!