Iron Mountain ski jump

Iron Mountain ski jump

Saturday, March 31, 2018

STARTING AT THE END                  [Sat, 3-31-18]

I have found that it is best to start at the end. Some might say that I am so close to the end now that there is no place else for me to start. I don’t just start at the end of my life, though. I start at the end of the day, and at the end of writing a column like this one, or the end of my walk. Wherever there is an end, that’s where I start.

It is true, as Maria sings in “The Sound of Music,” that the beginning is a very good place to start, but that’s for singing. Everything else, the end is a very good place to start.

According to Billy Collins, Juan Ramon Jiminez said, “The worst thing about death must be the first night.” [Preface to Billy’s poem, “The First Night”] I agree. Today is Boring Saturday, the day between Good Friday and Easter. I think in most calendars it’s called Holy Saturday, but it must have been so very dull for Jesus, so I call it Boring Saturday, even though the year’s 2nd Blue Moon is tonight. [1]

I credit Eugen Rosenstock-Huessy for giving me the words to talk about starting at the end to understand the Christ story. Too often we start at the cross to understand Christ and salvation. The real start of the Jesus story is at the resurrection. That is where my story starts, too.


1] Some people claim it was between the cross and the empty tomb that Jesus went into hell and preached to the folks there, which answers—sort of--a sticky theological question, “Isn’t it unfair to consign people to hell forever if they lived before Jesus and had no chance to accept him as savior?” If he preached in hell, too, they had their chance. But let’s not consider that, not only because it’s sort of far-fetched, but because it’s too non-dull. I have preached to people in hell, myself, and I know that can be quite interesting. In this post I’m trying to make the point that “Holy” Saturday was boring. Work with me on this.

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