Back when I began this blog, around the start of Lent, I described how at our church we'd been encouraged to take a nail and keep it with us for the duration of that season, living our personal failings and burdens into it. On Good Friday, we could bring back our nails and pound them into a piece of wood, symbolically nailing our pain to the cross. I said that I was going to carry my nail on behalf of all the people who, for whatever reason, don't feel they have a home in the Church.
Well, tonight, at our Tenebrae service, we pounded those nails into a rough-hewn cross at the front of the sanctuary. It wasn't a sorrowful ritual; as our pastor noted of the entire evening, "This isn't a funeral for Jesus," and there was a palpable feeling of relief and gratitude.
Somehow -- not quite sure of the logistics -- this beam is going to be incorporated into our new building addition. I love that idea -- that all the physical and other pain, all the oppression, all the trouble that we've been carrying with us, is going to be transformed into "a new thing."