So what can an unworthy preacher say at this funeral for Jesus? What words capture his life; provide comfort for those of us who will gather over the next week to mourn?
As I pondered these things sitting at my desk yesterday afternoon, my grandmother kept peering around the corner of my mind. We always called her “Grandmother.” That’s who she was. My mother’s mother was always Grandmother to us. She died on Palm Sunday in 1993. Through floods and blizzards, through the premature deaths of her husband and her oldest child, my mother, she turned to her deep faith—relied on her family and her unshakable love for Jesus.
When I stood to speak the eulogy at her funeral, it was her words that I said. She always told me, you preach your own funeral before you die. “What that preacher says over your casket doesn’t mean a hill of beans. What matters is what you did before you got there.”
As Jesus utters, “it is finished,” the eulogy has already been said. His life has been lived, short as it was—it is finished. He taught, he loved; he laughed; he lived. He stood up to the principalities and powers. He fed the hungry, provided healing to all the sick and infirm who came to him.
So what is the preacher to say about this Jesus? He preached his own funeral. It is finished.
You can read the rest of the midweek meditation here.