Nothing Much Happens Today
“Six days before the Passover Jesus came to Bethany, the home of Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead. Mary took a pound of costly perfume made of pure nard, anointed Jesus’ feet, and wiped them with her hair.” – John 12:1, 3
If you’re the Monday in Holy Week you probably have a bit of an inferiority complex. Yesterday was Palm Sunday. Later this week Maundy Thursday and Good Friday are up. And next Sunday, of course, is the big event.
But you? You’re just Monday.
Don’t feel too bad. A lot of churches have started cutting out Thursday and Friday altogether anyway. People are “too busy” to come to church more than once, so instead of telling the story over the course of the week, Palm Sunday has turned into “Passion Sunday” (historically a completely different liturgical tradition, by the way), and churchgoers now get the whole story at once. Leave church one Sunday, come back the next, and Christ will be risen.
I think that’s too bad. Not just because we miss the depth of Maundy Thursday and the passion of Good Friday, but because we are teaching that the rest of the week doesn’t matter much either. We somehow become a church of Sunday Christians, instead of weekday ones, even during this, our holiest of weeks.
What if this year we heard every story of Holy Week? What if we heard about how Jesus went to the home of a man he raised from the dead? What if we heard about how that man’s sister anointed him with perfume, and prepared him for the death he was about to face? What if we heard the story of when resurrection and preparation for the ultimate act of self-sacrifice sat at the same table?
What if we weren’t too busy for that? What if maybe Monday matters a little more than we think? And what if maybe Tuesday does too?
God, help us to take Holy Week one day at a time. And help us to hear every story we can of a week that would change everything.
Emily C. Heath is the Senior Pastor of the Congregational Church in Exeter, New Hampshire, and the author of the forthcoming Glorify: Reclaiming the Heart of Progressive Christianity.