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  • Voices: Fast Forward, by Elizabeth Evans Hagan


    by Elizabeth Evans Hagan

    Elizabeth Hagan.jpeg

    Who doesn’t like to fast forward? I think the DVR box that comes with most standard cable subscriptions for an extra $10 a month is one of the greatest inventions. With it, you no longer have to watch commercials you don’t like or any commercials for that matter. And best of all, the days of spousal fights over who controls the remote (at least as it goes in my home) are over. With the gift of the record feature, both you and your partner can watch what you want!

    Not only do so many of us have DVR or other recording devices boxes, but I think there is something about the fast forward feature that has taken over more than just our television screens. We live in a world where privilege helps us fast forward through parts of our lives that we don’t like.

    Calling ahead seating. Express Passes. TSA Pre-Check.

    But no matter how many resources we have other parts are difficult.

    Divorce. A spot of cancer in your lungs. Daughter is repeating the 3rd grade.

    And it’s true isn’t it? Rarely do we sit with annoyance, traffic jams, or life altering news longer than we have to. We are programed to get on to the next thing and quickly! Sometimes we eat too much, drink too much or sleep too much in an attempt to get there faster.

    I believe this is the same way that most Christians feel about Holy Week. We want the fast forward feature. Where is it?

    We’ve just experienced the highs of “Hosanna! Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!” from Palm Sunday. And if we go to worship on Easter we’ll be asked to exclaim, “Christ is risen. Christ is risen indeed!” So much happiness, right?

    But what about the Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday?

    Though I’d very much like to fast forward through the hard stuff of holy week: taunting, betrayal, hopelessness, pain, suffering and abandonment, I don’t think we can as Christians. Our story is as much about the pain as it is about Sunday’s joy. There is so much we can learn about Jesus as we go one step at a time. 

    Let us not fast forward, my friends. Stay put in today. 

    Elizabeth Evans Hagan is an intentional interim minister serving churches in the Washington, D.C., area. She blogs regularly over at Preacher on the Plaza and loves collecting airline miles, along with her husband Kevin for their next trip. Elizabeth is author of Dreaming in the Present Tense: Grief, Infertility and Grace due out February 2017 via Chalice Press. You can read more about the book here: http://bit.ly/1JN9714