Welcome to Mary Anne Radmacher's blog.

One way to get to know a person you've just met is to ask them to tell you about their favorite friends. It's said that a person essentially becomes an aggregate of the five people with whom they spend the most time.

There's another telling question to ask a stranger. It's all about a book.

1) Is there one book that you have re-read and will read again (and again)?
2) What is the most recent book that you've read and what stands out to you most?
3) What is the title of a book you recommend most often to friends?
4) What was the last book you read that made you so sad when it came to the end? (Because you wanted to keep on reading, not because the ending was sad!).

If the person you are just getting to know has never re-read a book, can't remember what stood out from the last book they read, doesn't recommend books to friends and has never felt sad to stop reading an excellent book...

I suggest that you stop conversing with them. And, perhaps, run. Kidding (not kidding). Perhaps you might consider striking up a conversation with someone else that you might want to get to know. AND start THAT conversation off by recommending a book you've recently read...

Sunday, March 31, 2013

An Easter-Inspired Essay

Why do you look for him here?  He is not here.  He is risen.   New Testament Luke 24

I’m rooted in the construct of Christianity.  Absolutely.  My parents used it as reprieve and auto baby-sitter.  I didn’t have to walk all the way around the block to show up in the appointed room for the specified event.  I just climbed the fence that divided by back yard from the basement steps of the church.

I’ve been climbing that fence ever since.

I’m not in a church building today.  But I do recognize the significance of an empty tomb.  Imagine.  The guy you’d given up everything you owned, believed, been taught...the guy
that you suffered the disdain of your family (What do you MEAN you have a new family?) and the mocking of your friends (You are missing the huge buffet event AGAIN to feed the never-ending poor?  Whadaya crazy?)...THAT guy.  Just broke your heart by being killed, right before your very eyes.  And now?  You don’t even get to mourn.  The body’s gone missing.

That is how it is in a season of Spring.  Of Renewal. Of Fresh Constructs.  Of surprisingly empty tombs.  You go along - living your days according to a mission/model/intention statement/set of beliefs that have worked.  Well.  Well, pretty well. Then there are those inexplicable holes where you just try to jump over the stuff that makes no sense. Simply because it used to make sense.   You are hoping to soon get back to the “things making sense place.”  But you can’t.  What are you looking in there for?  It’s empty.  That has risen.  It has moved on.  Without you.

Spring is the growing season.  The season of change.  The season in which the seeds surprise you.  Sometimes really surprise you - as I just learned from my resident seed saving experts - you can plant a red pepper seed and get (viola!) a different kind of pepper all together.  One of the many surprises of the season. 

I have never set aside my faith, my deep seated understanding of my beliefs.  I have simply stopped walking around the block to enter the narthex, the sanctuary, the meeting room.  I climb the fence.

My understanding of spirit serves me as I serve the world.  I didn’t explain to anyone when I was a child when asked, “How’d  you get here so fast?”  That was between the backyard, the fence and me.  Nor do I much explain when people ask me weekly what beliefs fuel my journey.  That I show up and do what I do in the world is my most common answer to inquiries about the specifics of my belief system.  To use another familiar metaphor  - If you want to know what kind of tree it is, look at the fruit.  But even there  Spring has a surprise for you.  The seed you think you plant may not be the fruit the tree ends of up yielding. 

So this Easter Day I yield to the new ways.  The beginnings.  The empty tomb of all the ways I used to work, know and be.    In practical terms, on this day, the tomb is empty because I myself am rising.  Born again.  Again. 
mary anne radmacher ©

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