Listen in as guest speaker Anita Giardina discusses God’s good interruptions, and their ability to invite us to recognize Holy Ground. Anita is a friend of the BIC, having recently been involved in ministry at the downtown Toronto parish of the Meeting House. Anita currently serves as the Canadian Director of the Women’s Speakers Collective.
When God InterruptsMessage by Anita Giardina – March 21, 2021
The story of a woman anointing Jesus appears in all four Gospels:
- Matthew 26:6-13
- Mark 14:3-9
- Luke 7:36-50
- John 12:1-8
Key Passage: Matthew 26:1-13, The Woman in Bethany Who Anointed Jesus
Samuel anointed David to be king (1 Samuel 16:12-13)
The priest Zadok anointed Solomon to be king (1 Kings 1:39)
I am convinced that God LOVES interruption.
He celebrates this interruption by the woman and often shows up in interruption in the lives of people in the bible, and even our own.
When God Interrupts it is good.
In Genesis in the beginning the Spirit was hovering over the water and the bible says “God said, “Let there be light” – light interrupted the darkness, was separated from the darkness on the first day this hasn’t stopped throughout the course of history.
Lent and Easter are sometimes described as 40 dark days with light bursting forth at Easter.
This means we hope for and expect that Jesus is bringing all things to right. Even now. This is his great task, not ours. THANK GOD.
Our task, invitation, is to agree with God.
To proclaim as the woman of Bethany even when we don’t have words, even if we don’t know how God is using our actions, we can follow
In John 10:27, Jesus says: “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.”
Practical steps to practice recognizing Holy Ground:
- Take off your shoes like Moses was instructed
- Mindfully open your heart to God
- Mindfully or physically open your hands to be present to God and what he is doing even in the interruptions
When God Interrupts it is good.
This doesn’t mean there isn’t a cost. ie. The woman poured out expensive perfume – there was a cost, and it was lavish. Moses may have had other plans for his life before God showed up to him in a burning bush.
Can you think of any other examples?
When God Interrupts it is good. Interruptions can be an invitation to recognize Holy Ground. You don’t have to be a special prophet to be on Holy Ground, you only need to notice that you are.
I wrote a prayer for us to help us welcome the interruptions. I want to recognize that we are in the messy middle, in the in between. Everything is not roses, yet.
Take some time this week to give yourself the opportunity to pause and take inventory of the interruptions you have experienced this year – the costly and unhappy ones – the suffering, the loss, the loneliness… add your own.
Because the story isn’t finished yet.
Things are still out of sorts.
And that is ok.
We can sit with that and grieve and ask Jesus about it.
If you want to, if you’re ready, you can bring these things to Jesus and ask him where he is in it.
God – thank you
That you are using all things for our good
That it is your great task to make all things right
That redemption and resurrection is our story because of you
We take a moment now to recall the disruptions – the interruptions this year has brought us – Take inventory of your interruptions this year, you, like many of us have probably been through a lot (2-5 mins, set a timer if that helps)
If you’d like you can invite Jesus to show you where he has been in these interruptions. If you’re not ready to do that, that’s ok. Let’s take another moment for reflection and then continue in the prayer. (2-5 mins, set a timer if that helps)
We have been interrupted and we are held, loved, met, and pursued by you at the same time.
Your story hasn’t changed, and you are inviting us into it, even now.
We have experienced loss, suffering, and we are blessed.
We are lonely and we are yours.
You are never further than our next breath.
May we be sheep who know your voice and follow it.
May we proclaim your truth with our words, actions, like the woman in Bethany, and our lives.
Before you Lord, we pour ourselves out.
We give you our hopes and expectations for yours.
We give our plans and provisions for yours.
We give our ways and structures for yours.
We pour out our precious oil, we take off our shoes and recognize that here, in the disruption, in the interruption, you are here, also.
We are on Holy Ground.
Help us to know that Holy Ground isn’t just where we are going, but where we are now, even in the interruptions.
Make us people ready to be interrupted by you.
For those of us who are suffering give us daily bread – give us just what we need for today.
When we experience interruptions, would you show us where you are in them?
Would you show us how you are still making all things new, and how we can join you in this work?
Thank you that you call us to know you the one true living God who reigns forever and ever – whose way of peace and love is permeating our reality even as things seem out of sorts.
Lord, have your way in us.
About Anita Giardina: Anita is passionate about discipleship, and the church being the best, healthiest place it can be. She loves serving as the Canadian Director of Women Speakers Collective where she works to liberate and empower the voices of women in Canada and across the globe! Anita is near completion of her Master of Theological Studies at Wycliffe College (and University of Toronto) and is looking forward to the new adventure of life and ministry with her fiancé Philip.
You can connect with Anita at
@anita.giardina on Instagram
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