Holy Shenanigans

You Are Loved (Pride 2024)

June 11, 2024 Tara Lamont Eastman Season 5 Episode 16
You Are Loved (Pride 2024)
Holy Shenanigans
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Holy Shenanigans
You Are Loved (Pride 2024)
Jun 11, 2024 Season 5 Episode 16
Tara Lamont Eastman

In this episode, Pastor Tara Lamont Eastman discusses the theme of 'wild love' and draws parallels between the protective nature of wild geese and the Holy Spirit, often symbolized as a wild goose in Celtic Christianity. Through a relatable story of encountering a protective goose family and the Gospel account of Jesus' unwavering commitment to his mission despite opposition, Tara emphasizes the unpredictable and bold nature of divine love. The message calls for an inclusive celebration of all people, echoing the spirit of Pride Month, and encourages listeners to engage with this 'wild love' by sharing their own rainbow-themed photos on social media. #junerainbows

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Support the Show.

Pastor Tara Lamont Eastman is an Ordained Minister of Word & Sacrament in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. She has pastored ELCA and PCUSA churches throughout New York State. She was a contributing writer to the Collaborate Lutheran Student Bible and the Connect Sunday School curriculum, published by Sparkhouse.

Show Notes Transcript

In this episode, Pastor Tara Lamont Eastman discusses the theme of 'wild love' and draws parallels between the protective nature of wild geese and the Holy Spirit, often symbolized as a wild goose in Celtic Christianity. Through a relatable story of encountering a protective goose family and the Gospel account of Jesus' unwavering commitment to his mission despite opposition, Tara emphasizes the unpredictable and bold nature of divine love. The message calls for an inclusive celebration of all people, echoing the spirit of Pride Month, and encourages listeners to engage with this 'wild love' by sharing their own rainbow-themed photos on social media. #junerainbows

Send Tara a Text Message

Support the Show.

Pastor Tara Lamont Eastman is an Ordained Minister of Word & Sacrament in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. She has pastored ELCA and PCUSA churches throughout New York State. She was a contributing writer to the Collaborate Lutheran Student Bible and the Connect Sunday School curriculum, published by Sparkhouse.

Tara: [00:00:00] Welcome to Holy Shenanigans. I'm your muse, Tara Lamont Eastman, a pastor, a podcaster, and practitioner of Holy Shenanigans. In the HSP neighborhood, we encourage the spiritual practice of looking and listening for the sacred in everyday life. This is what we call Holy Shenanigans. Welcome to a brand new month of June.

Tara: A month about love and pride. And a call for love to win over fear or hatred or loneliness. Love calls us to people and places that can sometimes seem wild, but then again, when I think about the risks Jesus took to love all people, this calling to wild love should come as no surprise. [00:01:00] And to help us learn a little bit more about this wild love, I offer you a holy shenanigans story.

Tara: About wild love. One spring day, there was a couple walking in the woods, and nearing the end of the path, they happened upon a family of geese. The geese were tall and strong, and they were not alone. They were in the company of little baby goslings, all fuzzy and fluffy and clumsy in their walking about.

Tara: The couple waited and waited and waited for the goose family to pass, and But they were very slow in their walking. The little goslings would stop and pick at the grass, take another step, and honk. This family of geese and those little fuzzy goslings were in no hurry. But the couple? They were in a hurry.

Tara: They were impatient and so they took a few steps [00:02:00] towards the geese and the largest goose hissed and stood their ground. Ever so slowly, the goose family made their way across the path. The impatient couple thought this was their chance. The man looked at the woman and said, I'm going to make a run for it.

Tara: But as he ran, the big goose began hissing and flapping its wings. And took a beeline towards the legs of the man. The woman shouted, Stop! Would the goose stop? The goose did not stop. The goose, hearing her yelling, turned its course, flapped its wings, and swooped over her. She crouched on the ground, trying to avoid the dive bombing of the goose.

Tara: She ran to the end of the path, but the goose kept following, flapping its wings and pecking at her back as she ran away. The couple kept running and eventually got clear of the goose and the goose [00:03:00] family. They were out of breath, and as they looked back down the path, the parent geese still stood guard over the goslings.

Tara: The parent geese continued to hiss and flap their wings. And in goose speak, saying, You better learn this, humans, to stay away from my babies. This was a lesson the humans would not soon forget. Wild geese are very fast, unpredictable, strong, and highly protective of their young. Wild geese will do what it takes to protect the little ones.

Tara: Do you know that the term wild goose is a theological one? Wild goose is sometimes used to describe the Holy Spirit. And it comes from the Celtic Christians whose name for the Holy Spirit was Aglaedoglas, or the wild goose. And this name hints of the power and [00:04:00] mystery and protective nature of the Holy Spirit.

Tara: Much like the wild goose in this story, the Spirit of God cannot be tracked or tamed. It is protective of those who are vulnerable. The Holy Spirit, or the wild goose, has an element of danger and unpredictability. Just like this week's Gospel reading from Mark 3. Jesus is about the work ministering to the needs of the crowds and meets one obstacle after another.

Tara: As he works to heal the sick in his hometown, his family comes to stop him. They say he's even lost his mind. The scribes say he is possessed by Satan or Beelzebub. They do this to discredit him and to get the crowds to stop listening to him. But the crowds, they stay with Jesus. Jesus family wants him to stop, but he doesn't.

Tara: The scribes want Jesus to stop, but he [00:05:00] does not. Jesus response is wild. He says to his family and the scribes, Truly, I tell you, people will be forgiven for their sins, whatever blasphemes they utter. But whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit can never have forgiveness. Jesus knew how important it was for the crowds to know that they were loved.

Tara: He didn't want anyone or anything to stop them from knowing about this gracious love of God, not even the scribes, not even his family. He did not want to grieve. The Holy Spirit. So Jesus continues the work that God has called him to. In Jesus public ministry, time and time again, he faces scorn and rejection.

Tara: But he refuses to stop. He is intent on being true to his calling, even though many would misunderstand him. [00:06:00] Jesus goal was, and continues to be, to bring healing, forgiveness, and restoration to those who are vulnerable and in need. There was no stopping Jesus from loving all of humanity with every ounce of his being.

Tara: Like that goose on the path protecting its young, Jesus takes a stand for the crowds, even if it means personal loss for himself. Jesus is faithful to his mission, even as his own family says he is out of his mind and the religious leaders go so far to say he is possessed by Beelzebub. At the end of this lesson, Jesus family returns one more time and asks to see him, but Jesus refuses.

Tara: Jesus stays with the vulnerable crowd. Jesus is resolved, no matter what happens, to protect and serve this new family. The crowd has become his [00:07:00] brothers, sisters, and mother. Jesus stays and heals the sick and will give all of himself for the entire crowd of humanity. Even all the way to the cross. Jesus actions, empowered by the Holy Spirit, are powerful, swift, and wild.

Tara: His actions are not for his own privilege or popularity, but Jesus gives all to benefit his little ones. He stands with the crowds of humanity, no matter the challenge or danger. Jesus is a wild goose. When I hear Jesus name the crowd as brother, sister, and mother, I hear this as an example of the bravery of love winning in real life.

Tara: Imagine what it was like for those who had been rejected and lonely and in need of healing to be welcomed and celebrated as Jesus family, [00:08:00] his real family. As the story shows us, when some encounter wild goose Jesus, they critique, they challenge, and they run the other way. But for those who are familiar with rejection, they see this wild love of Jesus and they run with all they have into that overwhelming love.

Tara: Dear hearts, God's love and doors are open to all peoples. The whole crowd of humanity. If only we can see it. God's love is for all peoples. Black. Brown, indigenous, Pacific Islander, people of color and culture, European, white, straight, and LGBTQIA Like all the colors of the rainbow are for all people, God's love is for all.

Tara: Isn't this wonderfully wild good [00:09:00] news? No matter who we are or what role we play in life, Jesus longs for us to embrace. And be embraced by the wild love of God. The question is, will we embrace the wild love of Jesus or will we run away? For love to win, we need to be bold like wild geese. For love to win, we need to celebrate all peoples.

Tara: For love to win. We must follow wild goose Jesus, wherever they lead us. Do you hear the wild call of God's love? Desmond Tutu says this. If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. If an elephant has a foot on the tail of the mouse, and you say you are neutral, the mouse will not [00:10:00] appreciate your neutrality.

Tara: God's wild love does not call for neutrality. God's love calls us to be bold and brave, just like that wild goose.

Tara: I am your holy shenanigans muse pastor Tara Lamont Eastman Thank you for joining us this week for holy shenanigans that surprise encourage redirect and turn life upside down all in the name of love This is an unpredictable spiritual adventure that is always sacred and never stuffy.

Tara: All this month, I invite you to join me in following Wild Goose Jesus and seek out ways for love to win in real life. To celebrate Pride Month, I will be taking photos of rainbows all month long and posting them to Instagram [00:11:00] with the hashtag June Rainbows.

Tara: I invite you to keep on the lookout for love and rainbows. To take your own photos of rainbows and all the colors of the rainbow and to share them on your social media with the hashtag June rainbows, be sure to tag me holy shenanigans podcast because love needs to win Until next time, may the wild goose love of God meet you where you are. Go with you on the journey. You are beautiful. And I am so glad that you are here.

Tara: Happy Pride. 

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