Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Nicodemus Limerick and commentary

There once was a man, Nicodee
Who went for Jesus to see.
To explain born again,
Though he a grown man.
Ahh, Water and Spirit, "I see."

John 3:7 You should not be surprised at my saying, 'You must be born again.' 8 The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit."

9 "How can this be?"

Nicodemus didn't get it. I don't get it. What does this stuff mean? Believers are born of the Spirit. Can you not tell where they come from or where they are going? Are we invisible to the world? Again, what does this mean?

Nicodemus was approaching Jesus from outside. Jesus is trying to say the only way to understand the ways of God are to be born of God (by the water and the Spirit.) This is an understanding from Old Testament times: Ezekiel 36:25-37:14.

Sometimes I still feel like Nicodemus, I'm not in outright rebellion, I just seem to be on the outside looking in. It is difficult to change polarity. We humans are such physical creatures, that we have difficulty seeing beyond our physicality. Is there life beyond our world. We want to believe, but on our terms. God smiles and shakes his head, "No."

The more we struggle to know by our might, the deeper and more perilous the ocean of ignorance becomes. After the strain becomes to great, the internal stress to the point of overwhelming us, we must let go and trust, or turn and swim back home to more familiar surroundings. Once our flailing ceases and the sense of drowning seems inevitable, we are lifted up. Bouyancy takes over. We suddenly see the dry land and the way home--but not our old home. A new, more natural space in which we move almost effortlessly. Yes, that's where I go. Did I decide? No. But it is where I ought to be anyway. So natural. So appropriate. So why did I fight so long?

The Father is in control. He loves and cares for those who still pull away and think they can figure it all out. He loves those of us who have surrendered ourselves to the water and have been lifted out. Questions that we use to agonize over seem to be no questions at all. The answers obvious and clear point us in directions that those outside cannot even fathom. Jesus came to help us see that it is easier to live as the Father gives life, breath, wind, Spirit. Rise up at his command and have life in you.

So I can see where it came from and where it is going. I must continue to let the wind of the Spirit blow on my face, and through my hair. It is a fair wind, there is no need to turn back and seek shelter in dark spaces. The world outside is stale and unpredictable, but we know where we are going and who is leading us there. It is so simple a new born child can understand–it just is.

No comments: