This Sunday coincided with Canada Day so we sang the national anthem at both services but I look at Canada Day much like Mothers and Fathers days, if the texts don’t take me toward it, well, that’s fine. All that to say, this Sunday’s sermons were about Jairus and his daughter.
The story is a familiar one to many of us. Jairus has a sick daughter, he finds Jesus, asks Jesus to lay hands on her and heal her, messengers come to report the daughter is dead, they go anyway, Jesus restores the child to life. And that is about as much attention I usually pay to this story. However, a gracious Spirit brought a really wonderful sermon by Frederick Buechner across my path and made me look at the story again; to get inside it in a way I haven’t done for a very long time. I realized I had fallen into, well into this:
Hearing them [stories] preached on in church year after year and reading them in the dreary double columns of some Bible, we tend to think of them as dreary themselves-as little stained-glass stories suitable for theologizing about and moralizing about but without much life in them or much relevance to the reality of our own lives and to us. (Frederick Buechner)
I revisited the story and think I got something from it I had never really seen before. I hope you find the same.
PS The recording below is the sermon by Frederick Buechner. I was unable to locate a recording of him preaching it so you have the opportunity to listen to me reading it. I didn’t preach it in a conventional fashion but rather read it to my wife and one of my kids in the living room. There is a plane going overhead at one point and some other random noise so in that way it is pretty true to life, if a loud motorcycle had driven by I would have thought I was in Moose Jaw 🙂
I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. I reproduce it here in no way taking any credit for any of it. I have never met Rev. Dr. Buechner but I like to think he would be okay with his words being used this way. Enjoy.