Rev. Dr. Steven Yagerman
When we take the path of the spirit seriously, we find that there is a foundation to life.
Out of the depths have I called to you, O Lord;
Lord, hear my voice; *
let your ears consider well the voice of my supplication.
The phrase “Out of the depths” could not be more pertinent in the midst of being in the epicenter of a pandemic. Everyone I speak to is struggling to keep their wits about them as they face this unprecedented situation. We are threatened by an invisible plague, stripped of real human contact for an indefinite period of time. Our distractions are gone, our contacts are removed, we empathize with the sick and dying as we fear for our loved ones and ourselves.
Where can we turn for solace? Where can we find a place to rest our weary minds and frightened souls? When there are no easy answers, we are driven to new levels of feeling and reflection. The usual medicine cabinet of bromides comes up empty.
In desperate situations we are forced to go deeper to find meaning. Out of the depths, we cry out to our creator and our redeemer. Out of the depths we are able to hear, think and feel in a new way. What had seemed rote and remote now has the possibility of being heard and appropriated in a new way.
All of our lessons for this Sunday speak about finding new life in the midst of death. Ezekiel 37, takes us with the prophet to the valley of the dry bones and we see these bones reverse the process of death. St. Paul speaks about setting our minds on the new life of the spirit that brings true life to these mortal (dying) bodies. And finally, Jesus comes to raise his friend Lazarus from the dead and tells his sisters that he is the resurrection and the life, not only in the afterlife, but right here and now.
We cannot understand these texts from our quotidian lives, but when we call from the depths, when we take the path of the spirit seriously, we find that there is a foundation to life that neither moth, nor rust, nor virus, nor famine can take from us. This life has a certain power and dignity and will be the strength that we and others need in these days of darkness and despair.
Let us all find strength and real life as we call yet again from the depths of our existence.