Tuesday, April 29, 2014

The Lazarus Experiment Day 7

The Lazarus Experiment attempts to define what a person would do, think, feel, say, accomplish, and plan if they had been brought back from death to life. Instead of a bucket list, we have determined to create the opposite. A compilation of abundant living bullet points.
The phrase, "kick the bucket" has several possible origins. Here's the Roman Catholic version:
"After death, when a body had been laid out ... the holy-water bucket was brought from the church and put at the feet of the corpse. When friends came to pray... they would sprinkle the body with holy water ... it is easy to see how such a saying as "kicking the bucket " came about. Many other explanations of this saying have been given by persons who are unacquainted with Catholic custom."—The Right Reverend Abbot Horne, Relics of Popery
The assumption may have been that the bucket was placed prematurely (always be prepared!). This especially makes sense when added with the notion that a person stretches out their legs in the moment of death. BAM! Bucket kicked.
So what is the opposite of kicking the bucket?
Filling the bucket.
Once Lazarus was unbound and able to speak, I can't imagine anything he'd probably want to do more that say "Thank You!"
To Jesus, his Lord and close friend, of course. He probably found it hard to stop thanking Jesus.
But after Jesus somehow pulled away from Lazarus' outrageous expressions of gratitude, I think Laz would have started on his "fill the bucket" list - people he should have thanked before he stretched out his legs and died.
The way we have the story in John 11, it seems Lazarus' death was fairly sudden. It does not seem that anyone was really prepared for it. So to, Laz himself probably found it a bit of a shock. (Fact is, even if you know way ahead in advance, I think death is still shocking.)
In my mind, I see Lazarus - after taking a long shower, combing his hair, getting dressed - rushing out to the crowd gathered on his lawn for mourning, now waiting in excitement to greet the new man. I think Lazarus would have bounced from one person to another, chatting it up and smiling and saying one thing over and over and over again: THANKS!
I've got shocking news for you. Are you sitting down? Maybe you should.
I can say that with nearly 100% accuracy. It's just truth. I'm sorry I had to be the one to tell you.
But you are alive now, and if you've given your formerly sorry, dying self to Jesus, you are now living abundantly. And while it is true that Jesus provides a way to conquer death and give us new life, we will still come to a time when we will be "absent from the body." And when that happens, we will no longer be able to tell people how much they mean to us.
Shame on me for not telling you how much I appreciate you. Shame on you for not grabbing everyone you know and telling them how thankful you are and what they mean to you. Shame on us for living without gratitude. We have so much to be thankful for - it could fill a bucket.
I don't want to shame you, really. But I'd like to give you - and me - a kick in the butt and say "Go on! Get out there! Tell someone you're thankful for them."
Mostly, tell God how very thankful you are that he has given you new life through Jesus Christ, our Lord.
Go on, you bucket-fillers. Say thanks. Use words if you must.
Suggested Scripture For Today: Psalm 107
Suggested Ideas:
1. Express your gratitude to God, but do not use words.
2. Make a list and a plan to say thank you to ten people who have never heard or read those words from you.
3. Send a thank-you note that is not digital.
4. Designate one day this week and say thank you to everyone you possible can, with a smile, looking directly in their eyes, slowly and deliberately so they can't write it off. Tell us on The Experiment how many people you thanked in one day.

My response to Day 7

Dau 7 - I have tried to find Lazzy things to do today while I pampered myself. I'm exhausted from the pain of the betrayal I call my body. I don't sleep, I can't exercise, the simplest things wear me out. While my doctor visits say I'm incredibly healthy my body betrays me at every turn. So today, while I;m thinking of lazzy things to do I realized I already was.
My son has a Big Brother - like Big Brother, Big Sisters Big Brother. He's been away on a trip to Spain and just returned and he and little boy saw each other today for the first time in a month. Little boy was ecstatic. It was good to see his excitement.
I slept while he was gone. When he returned another friend stopped by with whom little boy is supposed to spend the day tomorrow. Instead, they asked if he could spend the night with them. Little boy was truly excited and of course I said yes.
What did I do? I sat here and have dozed off and on all afternoon and evening. I don't remember the last time I slept so much. then I thought - well, maybe I'm gearing up for something BIG! Maybe I was supposed to rest, maybe it was exactly what Laz might have done after a busy week of "awakenings". So I forgave myself for not being more mobile today and just enjoying the fact that I slept.

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