No Name Nain

6 Jun

Luke 7:11-17

No Name Nain

Don’t know how he died

Goofing off?

Mama said: Don’t act foolish! You might get yourself killed!

Did he act foolish?

Was he riding the back of a donkey cart, throwing rocks?

Did the cart hit a branch?

Did No Name Nain fly off the cart?

Did he crack his skull and die instantly?

Or, was it an infection, spread throughout his body?

Did he die from a wicked fever?

We don’t know.

The only thing we know is that No Name Nain died.

It was the second funeral for his mama.

First, her husband died, the experienced one on their subsistence farm.

Second, her son died, the one she counted on to keep the farm going.

No Name Nain’s mama looked at her future, dead in the stretcher.

No one to farm.

No one to provide grandchildren.

The greatest nightmare a mama could endure.

The funeral procession headed out of town.

Meanwhile, a parade, led by Rabbi Jesus, headed into town.

The procession and the parade- a collusion course

The procession and the parade- they crashed

Jesus looked into that mama’s eyes

He had compassion

Her sadness became his sadness

Her sorrow became his sorrow

Then Jesus issued a strange command to No Name Nain’s mama

DO NOT WEEP!

How rude!

Of course,  she must weep.

Her future died, the path to eternal biological life cut off

Then Jesus issued a second command, this time to No Name Nain:

RISE! GET UP! LIVE!

No Name Nain sat up and starting talking

Where am I?

Why am I on this funeral stretcher?

Why are people screaming at me in terror like I am some kind of ghost?

Why are my friends crying so hard, snot is running out of their noses?

Why is my mama screaming?

Didn’t I tell you not to fool around and that you would get yourself killed?

It took awhile for No Name Nain to add it all up.

He had just been given an amazing gift, a Bonus Life

Jesus gave the gift, not knowing how he would use it

Would No Name Nain live his Bonus Life by blessing others?

Would No Name Nain waste his Bonus Life?

We don’t know.

What about me?

What about you?

We are all No Name Nain.

How will we use the Bonus Life we’ve been given?

Will remember that every heart beat is a gift?

Will we participate in the Bonus Life Jesus is sharing with the world?

Think about your Bonus Life, the life you are living right now.

Then pray this prayer: Gifted people, gift people!

I don’t know who you are.

I don’t know if anyone is reading this.

But I’d like you to think of me, the way I imagine you right now– as…

No Name Nain!

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