Saturday, April 14, 2012

Confirming the Cross

My husband is preparing the Easter sermon for tomorrow (according to the Orthodox calendar) and I am collecting my own Easter thoughts.

I was thinking about the standard greeting and response and how I have heard it from childhood, though maybe in different forms and languages.

We used to gather with other families on Resurrection Day, and it was quite easy for the kids to learn the greeting: "He is Risen."  -" He is Risen Indeed!" Sometimes we repeated it while passing Communion around.

And one year, at the kids' table, the girls and I (we tended to stick together) came up with our own version. Though the greetings had already been exchanged, we began to pass different things around the table, proclaiming to each other, "Bread!" -"Bread indeed." "Butter!" -"Butter indeed."

It was very childish and quite funny to us, but as I was reminiscing, I realized that the rationale behind the joke was that we were merely confirming what we regarded as fact. The "elements" on the table were tangible, and to argue with our proclamations would have been illogical. But we also had no reason to doubt that the news of the Resurrection was anything other than fact. We listened and repeated it and came to know, in our hearts, that it was true.


Monday, April 9, 2012

Timing

I had an epiphany today about Russian bureaucracy...it's like having a cold! As the joke goes, if you treat a cold, it will only last about 7 days, but if you leave it alone, it will take a whole week!

The same goes with trying to get something done here. You could struggle through, taking a lot of wrong turns, using trial and error, and it will take you "x" amount of time. OR you could start way in advance, do your research, use what seems like the best method, and it will STILL take you "x" amount of time. And by "x" amount of time I mean you will finish it in the Eleventh Hour, just before the bank closes or your visa expires, or your plane takes off, or the office closes for the weekend, etc.....

And by "you," I'm talking about myself, of course.

Oh, and just like a shot of antibiotics sometimes gets the recovery moving faster, well, it helps to have some connections. There is always a back door or side door or trap door that will suddenly take you down the express route.

I KNOW that God operates outside of all these restrictions. But I also know that I'm not so bad at planning, and that these things really are all beyond my control. So I have to let go a little and not try to be in the driver's seat all the time.