Posted by Admin

In our Presbyterian tradition we have two sacraments: baptism and communion.  We recognize them because we believe these are the two that Jesus experienced and commended to his disciples.

As they were going along the road, they came to some water; and the eunuch said, “Look, here is water!  What is to prevent me from being baptized?”
Acts 8:36
It really was that simple.  Philip and an Ethiopian eunuch: two hearts yearning and learning together.  A shared journey.  A pool of water.  Baptism.

Like many of my colleagues I have a set of six books on a shelf published by the Presbyterian Church (USA): The Supplemental Liturgical Resources.  Book #2 is Holy Baptism and Services for the Renewal of Baptism.  It is 114 pages long, filled with how’s and when’s, do’s and don’ts, why’s and where’s.  We have made it that complex.

Take, eat; this is my body.
Drink from it, all of you; for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.

Matthew 26:26,28
It really was that simple.  Jesus and the disciples: thirteen hearts yearning and learning together.  A shared Passover meal.  A loaf.  A cup.  Communion.

We are the greatest challenge to the power of our sacraments.  The danger in faith and in sacrament is that we create complexities that compromise their meaning.  We elevate the “how” above the “why”.  Jesus could talk theological circles around anyone at any moment; yet when sacramental time came, Jesus was the simple savior.

While focusing on being good stewards of God’s creation this Easter season, I would offer that the green movement began with Jesus.  If being green is to recognize the goodness of creation and to be in simple relationship with all that God has made, then Jesus was the founder of the green movement.  His revelations of God’s grace were simple, sacramental, and elemental: water, bread, and grapes.

May God bless our faith; that it would be simple and sacramental; may our green be God’s grace and God’s grace be our green.