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It's Never Too Late!

 Easter

30 and 31 Mar 2024

 


It’s never too late to start all over again. That is the chorus line to a song by Steppenwolf.  I remember listening to it and “feeling it” in the late 1960’s.   It could have been written for Peter, or for any one of us.  As I age, it resonates with me when I think of the things I wish I had NOT done and the things I have not done that should have been done.

 It sounds like something Jesus might have said. Come to think of it, he did say it.

The song says you can find a way to change today; you don’t have to wait until it’s too late, for it is never too late.  It doesn’t mean all the hurt and the harm can be brushed aside, but it does mean that love can and will triumph over neglect and selfishness.

In Luke’s version of the resurrection, the women (Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the other women) go to the tomb and when they find it empty, return to the room where they last met. The disciples dismiss what they say as garbage.  But not Peter! Whether Peter was a drinker or not we will never know.  It wouldn’t have surprised me if he had spent the night drowning his sorrows in something.  But he is there to hear the words of the women.  He does not dismiss what they say; something in him stirs and he runs to the tomb to confirm what he hoped to be true.  Everything changes for him at that moment. He is filled with wonder and that is all he needs.  We do not have to explain the resurrection, we do not need to seek out theories of atonement (the “why” of Jesus’ death); we just need to be filled with wonder and know the world has been changed. It is not our heads that need to be satisfied; it is our hearts.

The wisdom of age is that you know that you don’t know and that you don’t have to know.  Mature faith is faith that has followed doubt, betrayal, failure, and self-assurance. Mature faith allows you to run to the tomb, or walk, or find assistance to get there if needed, and be struck not with the need to know exactly what happened or how it happened, but why.  And even the why can be more than we need.

Death has been overcome and the way of Love has come into the world.   

I think this is when Peter got it.  He still made mistakes, but from this point on he lived into the role that Jesus told him he would have. He asked the question, as he ran to the tomb, could this be true?  And he knew it was, just as we know it is.  We do not need to explain the resurrection, we just need to have faith. Become as a child once more and embrace the mysterious, be filled with awe and wonder.

Jesus taught us who God is by the way he lived.  He drew in the poor, the mentally ill, those who had physical infirmities, and even those, like the tax collectors, who were despised by all. Salvation started then, with the incarnation. The resurrection did not teach us now to live, for that was done by Jesus in the short time he lived among us.  What the resurrection did was show us what are lives are like now, as children of God.  Peter was just beginning to understand that.

So we begin again; we arise from the lethargy and fear and live into the hope.

Peter knew and we know; it’s never too late to start all over again.

 

It's never too late to start all over again

To love the people you caused the pain

And help them learn your name

Oh, no, not too lateIt's never too late to start all over again


Songwriters: Kathleen Ann Parker, Jeri Waxenberg, Kay Weaver

For non-commercial use only.

Data from:Musixmatch

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