Whatever Sunday is, it is at least this manifesto: Yes, the world is broken and hurt and bleeding. Yes, I am a part of the breaking. But yes, Christ is making all things new. And yes, this will take some time and it will feel untrue. But yes, He really intends to make beautiful things from broken things.
We can jump in our cars and rush off to a service where the first part of that manifesto is rushed through. It’s hard for the pastor, with all of his cuts, and bruises, and expectations, to say, “Good Morning. We live in a world where the broken need a healer and the injured need a hope. But it is a good morning for Christ came to call things out of brokenness. Let us worship this king today.”
That is a hard shot to take: the drink of confession. Yet, the normal welcome you may have heard this morning can leave a sour taste. When any man greets a crowd, he would be wise to speak with kindness and humility for he is indeed speaking to the injured. He of course is among the injured – a bandage here and there. Yet, someone has to speak and so he does.
So I want us to know that we need to be honest about our bandages. For to be dishonest about our wounds is to tell the injured among us that to ask for healing is a shameful request. If we hide our need for our Savior we offer not good news, but hard news. The hard news that there are indeed some that have simply not been hurt, not been injured, and not been worn. This is hard because the Christian then, is that man who got just a bit lucky. He is the man outside the ring marveling at his luck to not be in the fight.
How often we tell this narrative to our neighbors. How often we tell this narrative to ourselves.
Yet, this is the good news which I think Sunday was born to proclaim: “I’m in the ring, and I’m injured, weary, and worn. Yet, my Savior is in the ring too. He knows mourning and pain and fear. And He tells me things that I can scarcely believe. He speaks of newness, and healing and love. He tells me of a home and new mornings. He presses my wounds and tells me stories of resurrection. Oh, you would love to meet Him.”
So it is good to put resurrection clothes on as we hustle into our pews and bless our Sunday meal. Yet, it is a shameful thing to forget the Savior who bought our new clothes – who opened our eyes to world that adopted orphans and made them heirs. It is shameful to speak as a man outside the ring for we are not. We have injured and been injured ourselves. And it is here, by left hooks and the following jabs, we have met our Savior.
Here, in the ring, next to the boxer and the bloody our Savior is found.