Jesus answered them, ‘The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Very truly, I tell you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains just a single grain; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. Those who love their life lose it, and those who hate their life in this world will keep it for eternal life.' (John 12:23-25)
In these two poignant verses, Jesus speaks of his glorification, the word used in the Gospel of John to refer to Jesus’s death and resurrection. In an agricultural image familiar to his ancient audience, Jesus reminds them and us that a stalk of wheat must “die,” collapse, decompose, decay, for the grains of wheat to sprout, to be born again or anew. The movement from life to death to life again is of central importance in the sacrament of baptism and the life of our Lord. Because just as Jesus died, we too must die to our old, self-centered, death-dealing, short-sighted, unkind selves to have the chance to be new people centered in faith and love.
I think of the ways I live a life that is too small, not worthy of my calling from God. I seek God’s power to be born anew. May you consider walking the labyrinth as a spiritual discipline on your Lenten journey. On the labyrinth let God’s abiding love undergird and empower you to seek God’s gift to be transformed into new life.
Dear God, By your grace, please come into my life and help me grow to more perfectly reflect you and your transforming love. Amen.
Gail Williford - Lover of Labyrinths, God, & God’s People