The Gospel of Thomas, a manuscript discovered in 1945, gives us new understanding of Jesus from the Wisdom tradition. It offers these words for the spiritual journey. You hear echoes of these words in Matthew and Luke. The Thomas saying goes further.
If you are searching you must not stop until you find.
When you find, however, you will become troubled.
Your confusion will give way to wonder.
In wonder you will reign over all things.
Your sovereignty will be your rest. (Logion 2 in The Gospel of Thomas:Wisdom of the Twin, Translated by Lynn Bauman)
This short saying outlines the shape of the spiritual journey.
We seek. We find.
Discovery can be uncomfortable while we sort it out; we become troubled.
This gives way to wonder and a deeper sense of Presence.
We sense the unity/wholeness of all things. We rest.
It is a spiral journey. When we open our heart to spiritual invitation, we make and remake this journey.
We stand on the threshold of Holy Week. Embedded in this week is the shape of this journey.
It’s all there: the yearning, the agitation, the anguish, the wonder, the knowing, the peace.
I’ve had marvelous opportunity in my life to walk through Holy Week.
With the Iona Community, in the day-by-day unfolding of the story in art and liturgy.
In Jerusalem, literally walking in the footsteps of this story.
In worship, remembering the events in word and song.
These are often re-enactments and they have their place in supporting faith and practice.
There’s more. There is the inner work of Holy Week. The not-just-back-then Jesus invites us to bring our open hearts to this week. Beyond belief, there is a journey of seeking and discovery, of agitation and anguish, of marvel and wonder, of unity and peace.
St. Teresa of Avila, (it’s her 500th birthday on March 28) hears Jesus invite:
“Seek yourself in me
And seek me in yourself.”
In this mystery we enter Holy Week — and into the Heart of God.
And I will try to offer heart-wondering and soul-questions as we make our way through the events.
See also: Love Riding On: Palm Sunday