Going to the Houston Rodeo for the first time was an experience that I will never forget. The excitement of the rodeo and the decadence of the food items made this Mississippi brother a very happy man. Above the wonderful music and great Houstonian spirit, I enjoyed most of all the Mutton Bustin' event. Seeing a child clinch onto a sheep was not only hilarious, but also very moving for me. Parents and rodeo organizers put these children on the back of the sheep while whispering words of encouragement into the children's ears. Then the bell rang, and the 50,000 plus revelers cheered on these kids holding onto the sheep for dear life. Then, as if this was not enough, the children were expected to do an interview in front of the entire crowd.
Seeing this entire process for the first time filled me with a spirit of joy and appreciation for the imagery. You see, the Christian life is nothing but one Mutton Bustin' aiter another! How often have you and I held onto the Lamb during our lives? As moments get scarier, we clenched even tighter to the Lamb of God. Yet, our experiences as Christians do not stop there. It is not enough for us to hold onto the Lamb. No. You and I are called to let the Lamb of God run on as we clinch onto him. Surrounded by the Christian faithful cheering us on, we are also called to testify joyfully with the same courage those 5 and 6-year-old children had at the rodeo. Indeed, we may not know where the Lamb will take us nor how difficult the whole process will be. Yet, as a resurrection people, we are called to trust that the stone will be rolled back, and the Lamb will run on. So, hold on for the ride of your lives and be prepared to preach with joy and courage, "Alleluia to the Risen Christ, the Lamb who takes us were we need to go!"
-br. James Martin Nobles, O.P.