Something New

Today is Christ the King Sunday.  It is also the scripture in Luke 23:33-43 of Jesus being crucified on the cross.  This does not seem to be much of a coronation.  As a matter of fact it turns all our ideas about leadership, being in control, having power on there heads.  The most unlikely thing, it seems, is even though Jesus is in much pain, near death, and suffering that he takes the time to listen to what is going on around him.

He listens to the thief hanging next to him and offers comfort, strength, and healing amidst all the pain, jeering, and disbelief.  Later it will change the centurion who hears all this into a believer about who Jesus is.  At Diocesan Convention these past two days we have had this opportunity to listen.  We had time built into each meeting that was designated for specific topics of discussion and we were able to listen to each other in a new way.  This doesn't mean that everything in the general meeting went smoothly and all the resolutions were passed.  I think it did mean that we drew into deeper conversation, risking a little bit more because we knew each other a little better.  Because we were drawn into love and hospitality and friendship by listening one to another. 

If this can make that much difference at a Convention where we meet for only a couple of days what difference could it make in our faith communities?   If we felt we could freely express our opinions on difficult topics, if we felt listened to in those areas which are important to us, if we opened ourselves more to the other in our midst and heard Christ or imitated Christ by being good listeners?  We just might find ourselves more deeply drawn into community, more deeply fed, and more deeply a part of the body of Christ.  Go and dare to listen, ask the harder deeper questions, and stand by Christ or as an imitator of Christ bringing healing into a world that doesn't listen deeply.