|Pen and Ink Reflections||
The bible reading (from John chapter 14) we just heard is particularly appropriate for today. For we say a final farewell to two people, who, individually, and together, shared a house of love – a dwelling together in deep faith, in which there were indeed many rooms, and in which peace and joy flourished. Indeed, literally, they nurtured one house in Market Rasen for 50 years, in which so much love and hospitality was shared by others...
Today is April Fool’s day, and there can be no better day for foolery and laughter than Easter Day. For there is a tradition of laughter and joke telling on Easter Day that began hundreds of years ago. The story goes that a monk in Bavaria was pondering the solemn events of Good Friday and the earth shattering events of Easter Day and suddenly he had a new insight, and he began to laugh. Once he started laughing he couldn’t stop; he laughed and laughed and laughed. His hearty laughter startled his companions from their solemn contemplation and they looked at him with amazement and disapproval. ‘Don’t you see?’, he cried out, ‘it was a joke! The best joke ever. On Good Friday when Jesus was crucified, the devil thought he had won. But God had the last laugh on Easter Day when he raised Jesus from the dead.’ And the monk began to laugh again, and his fellow monks began to get it, and they laughed and it became known as the Easter laugh, and the tradition of laughing and telling jokes on Easter Day began. So I am hoping that in a little while over morning tea we can share all our best jokes and laugh together.
The laughter echoing through the ages is a tangible witness to the good news of Easter- that Jesus Christ is alive among us; that death does not have the last laugh; that darkness does not conquer light. All the forces that conspired to kill Jesus, the fury, the lovelessness, the betrayal - God makes of them all a laughing stock. God laughs...