Friday, April 14, 2006

The Mender of all Broken Things

Many things require thought of me this day.

Finally, after many years, I mended a broken ceramic figurine. I'm not usually one to keep such knick-knacks about, but this one is special: my father gave it to me when I was barely four years old. It is a baby deer with the very likeness of Bambi, yet a bit more wild. It was brought it home from a business trip, and I distinctly remember holding it (only under motherly supervision) before it was placed atop a corner shelf in the dining room. There it would pose, its brown eyes perpetually begging me to play with it.

Over the years, this winsome deer followed me over hill and dale into various habitats, eventually suffering a broken leg along its journey. A drawer is not an interesting place for any wild animal, but that's where this one reposed for way too long.

What finally persuaded me to fix this sweet thing?
I can't say.
But, really, what keeps us from fixing any broken thing?
(With this question, I model the theme of this blog.)

Today being Good Friday, I clean, plan menus, and fiddle in the kitchen to the dark and magnificent strains of Bach's St. Matthew Passion. This is a recording that took place in Troy Music Hall with a choir that I love, and 2 orchestras made up of people I love. Six years ago, I sat at the organ under the filtered light of that wonderous hall, attentive to every nuance, helping to weave soloists, oboe, strings, flute and voices together to present the greatest story ever told. Three hours of emotional music behind us, we are left with the chorus sighing, Sleep well, Sweet Jesus. Real grief always grips my heart here, and it is good for my soul to experience it. Good Friday leaves us with Christ in the grave; all but ragged hope stolen from us. It is well worth our time to reflect on what took place many years ago, on a dark Friday.

Now the Lord is brought to rest
My Jesus, good night.
The toil is done which our sins made for Him
My Jesus, good night.
O blessed limbs, see, how I weep for you
with penance and remorse
that my fall brought You into such distress.
My Jesus, good night.

Take, while life lasts, a thousand thanks for your Passion
and for prizing my soul's good so dearly.
My Jesus, good night.

Why so cast down, O my soul?
Put your hope in God, the Mender of All Broken Things.

What an unspeakable gift to hold the Risen Lord in our hearts every day!


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