Crossing Boulevard

with Rev. Rachel

20 YOU IN ME AND I IN YOU  John 14

In the background is a romantic nightscape. One gazes into another’s eyes. It is an card captioned: “The best thing about you and me is me.” Poor guy. He presumed she would end that sentence with “us”.

I have a hang-up with certain 1st person pronouns. I once had a boss who favored the royal we (“we” meaning “I”). To that, add our pesky human tendency to go plural when protesting. One person speaks for others who may or may not exist and thereby announces having missed the lesson on direct and owned feedback…mercy!

More troubling for me is the we/us that surfaces at weddings. Though I know that it is not my marriage and not the time to critique, the unity candle causes me to squirm. Two individuals lose themselves entirely in one flame? Yikes. Equally off is the notion of two persons co-existing without any measure of sacrifice or intentional growth.

Note that I said “hang-up”. I am sharing my thoughts on the matter. I am also admitting how I am can be overly susceptible, overly reactive to this stuff.

Where was I? Oh yes, on the subject of one feeling that the best thing about togetherness is his or her contribution: If anybody gets to say that (and get away with it) it is God. Yet, Scripture seems to insist that the heart of the matter lies elsewhere. The divine, it seems, can only express itself in the context of relationship; thus, creation and the incarnation. If God begins a sentence with: The best thing about you and me…God completes it: Is that it creates the terrain for love.

Love may be a lofty ideal somewhere. In John 14, it is that upon which all of it rides. Love is what moves us to obey. Love is what prompts God’s giving of the Spirit. Love is the medium through which precious things are revealed (v.21).

Love, then, needs soil. It needs room to be and room to become more fully the force that it is. Love needs syncing with this notion of ‘You in me and me in you’ (v.20).

You in me and me in you… I hear Jesus saying: Now, that is what “us” is. Rachel, maybe healthy plural pronoun usage is tied in with hospitality. I create room within me for you. You show me to the guest quarters within you. And we are, well, “we”.

With that, I feel the hanging-up of a hang-up coming on! Easter, friends, is every bit able. Grammar police, at ease: May it do a number, a re-creating number, on me, on you, on ‘me & you’.