When they came to the house of the leader [Jairus] of the synagogue,
he saw a commotion, people weeping and wailing loudly.
When he had entered, he said to them,
“Why do you make a commotion and weep?
The child is not dead but sleeping.”
Someone I talked to about this text this week said, “These people weren’t idiots, how could they mistake someone who is alive for Simone who has died?” And I agree the family, friends and crowds gathered at the bedside and in the courtyard of Jairus houses weren’t idiots and neither are we. But often do we get caught up in the whirlwind of life’s tasks or in the habits of our coming and going and fall asleep to the wonder and potential for new life all around us?
How do we look past what scares us, challenges us or is just plain disgusting and dig around in the dirt for new life? Jesus invites the small girl to wake up, and in doing so invites us to wake up as well. Wake up to the places where death seems to be winning but rather than be defeated or succumb to our own fears of being infected by death Jesus invites us to wake up to the new life that is emerging from these places of darkness.
I leave you with this blessing from one of my favorite poets, e.e. cummings:
i thank You God for most this amazing
day:for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky; and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes
(i who have died am alive again today,
and this is the sun’s birthday; this is the birth
day of life and of love and wings: and of the gay
great happening illimitably earth)
how should tasting touching hearing seeing
breathing any–lifted from the no
of all nothing–human merely being
doubt unimaginable You?
(now the ears of my ears awake and
now the eyes of my eyes are opened)