This is the last Wednesday Wisdom for May.
Winter months don’t seem to pass this quickly.
3:1 Now there was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a leader of the Jews.
3:2 He came to Jesus by night and said to him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God; for no one can do these signs that you do apart from the presence of God.”
3:3 Jesus answered him, “Very truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above.”
3:4 Nicodemus said to him, “How can anyone be born after having grown old? Can one enter a second time into the mother’s womb and be born?”
3:5 Jesus answered, “Very truly, I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and Spirit.
3:6 What is born of the flesh is flesh, and what is born of the Spirit is spirit.
3:7 Do not be astonished that I said to you, ‘You must be born from above.’
3:8 The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.”
3:9 Nicodemus said to him, “How can these things be?”
3:10 Jesus answered him, “Are you a teacher of Israel, and yet you do not understand these things?
3:11 “Very truly, I tell you, we speak of what we know and testify to what we have seen; yet you do not receive our testimony.
3:12 If I have told you about earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you about heavenly things?
3:13 No one has ascended into heaven except the one who descended from heaven, the Son of Man.
3:14 And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up,
3:15 that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.
3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.
3:17 “Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.
Learn to Weep
“When Jesus saw her weeping, and those with her also weeping, he was greatly disturbed in spirit and deeply moved… and Jesus began to weep.” – John 11:33-35
A little girl asked him why God lets children suffer—asked Pope Fra ncis, that is, in Manila last January. “Terrible things happen to children,” she told him through tears. “It’s not their fault. Why does God permit it?”
It was an entirely unscripted question. So was his answer.
He didn’t correct her theology or otherwise attempt to pacify Glyzelle Palomar who, in front of a million people, had just told him that she scrounged food from garbage and slept outside on a cardboard m at.
Here’s what he did. He enfolded the sobbing child in his arms. Then he admonished everyone to pay close attention because, h e said, “She has just asked the one question with no answer.” To her he said, “Only when we are able to weep about the things you have lived will we understand anything and be able to answer you.”
Then he taught the crowd, “The world needs to weep. The marginalized weep, the scorned weep, but we who are more or less without needs, we don’t know how. We must learn. There are realities in this life you can see only with eyes cleansed and clarified by tears… If you don’t learn to weep, you’re not a good Christian!”
Whenever we’re asked the question with no answer, “Our answer must first be silence, and then a word born of tears.”
Give us tears, O God, so that we may see; and seeing, join each other in suffering; and in joining, be moved to love in deed.
If God said,
“Rumi, pay homage to everything
that has helped you
there would not be one experience of my life,
not one thought, not one feeling,
not any act, I