Holy Saturday morning, I lay in almost until 8. I was lying there thinking of Jesus dead in the tomb and (probably inappropriately) envying him for having a full day with no thoughts.
I thought of myself- unproductive, discouraged, without much faith in the wake of world-events and the church’s really worse than inadequate response to sexual abuse. As good as dead, I thought but with racing thoughts. I wondered if Jesus really counted as “dead” if he was just going to come back anyway. It seems like rest then not death. But without thoughts.
In my lack of faith a prayer escaped me. God laughs I think at the way I make the world’s worst atheist. I prayed that none of this would be happening and God did not grant my prayer. I prayed that noone I know will die of COVID-19 and I know that God will not grant that prayer. There is a 0% chance that by the end of this noone I know will have died. I listed the people I particularly can’t afford to lose, and tried to bargain with God. I would rather it were me than any of them. Unlikely whispered the hollow silence at the core of the universe. And selfish it added knowing I would rather be mourned than mourn.
But I cannot afford to lose the ones I love the most. And I envied Jesus for being the one mourned not the mourner, although of course I would not want “Good Friday” to happen to me. But I wondered if our tendency in stories for centuries now to put men at the centre- achieving, acting, suffering, living, dying- and women at the margins- watching powerlessly, mourning, questioning, following, staying is the problem with the world (envy now for NZ who have a woman at the helm instead of a smirking idiot).
After the bushfires the pandemic and of course still the suffering caused by child-abusers in the church. How dare Pell act like some sort of an innocent victim, when at best he enabled the abuse with his lack of listening. He says “only God can judge me” making God partly to blame for his ability to walk free and keep spreading his unloving, uncompassionate words and deeds. I want to remind him that God is not mocked but I am actually shocked by the lack of faith in the “leadership” of the church like also our “Christian” prime minister who promotes churches but neglects the widow and orphan.
It turns out I must believe in God after all because the blasphemy of all these “Christian” men, these “Christian” leaders really disgusts and saddens me.
But who will hear my prayer for the ones I love, and the ones I would love if I knew them better? People are already dying, the fact that those people have not touched me is not the point. Who will guard the nurses and the childcare workers and the fast-food workers (like my son)? Who will guide us to see this plague as a call to turn away from the Pharaoh’s of this time? Who will be Miriam and sing and argue us out of bondage (I’ve had enough of Moses and Aaron’s posturing). Miriam means “bitter” and someone who I listen to told me to be “bitter” for as long as I need. But I know from experience I don’t make a good leader.
Maybe there will be more than one. Maybe we will lead each other with dancing and rolls of toilet paper for everyone.
May Jesus quiet my mind and may I be dead to the anxieties and even to the marking for a day
for a day
or even an hour would do…