Dear St. Mark friends,
My wedding invitation did not arrive in the mail, so apparently, I am not invited. I’m speaking of the majestic royal wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle this weekend on the “other side of the pond.” While I often joke about my Norwegian heritage, 25% of my bloodline is actually British; so naturally I feel that I’m due a modicum of recognition from my prominent relatives abroad. From what I hear, though, I’m not the only one sitting out this event. Poor me…misery loves company.
One of my favorite movies is, “The King’s Speech,” based on the true story of King George VI and his quest to find his voice. Throughout the movie, one is made painfully aware of the formal class distinctions between members of the royal family and mere commoners. Yet, in the end, it is an ordinary man with an extraordinary gift who assists the new king in recognizing and achieving his potential as a leader. It is a movie that extends hope in the most desperate and challenging of circumstances.
With the hymns of Easter still fresh in our ears and on our tongues, I’m reminded that the royal bloodline of King David has been extended to each of us by the Son of David, the Son of God. Jesus is indeed the heir to God’s throne…witnessed at his resurrection and ascension. Our New King, however, is also our brother…meaning that no one is left out; no one is dismissed for lack of a proper bloodline. Each of us has direct access to this King…each of us has been invited to the resurrection party!
As we conclude the seven weeks of Easter in anticipation of Pentecost, I encourage you to share in this celebration of inclusivity and new life. God has raised Jesus from death so that we, too, might one day be raised to new and eternal lives with Christ our King. With God, the playing field is made even; sin and death have been conquered once and for all in his Son. Whatever disparities and prejudices we face today will fade at his second coming and the life to come.
So, do not despair, good friends…there are more wedding invitations right around the corner. The best invitation includes us all: “the marriage feast of Christ, which has no end!”
Walking this journey of faith with you,
Pastor Mark Hagen