I met her on my travels, she was going one way, me the other. She was a dancer she said, or had been when younger. Till one evening when she had been tricked. Become a pawn in a deadly game. A birthday party, and a dance for a king. So far so good. Everyone had oohed and aahed and at times been nothing but silent, soaking up the beauty of her movement. She clearly had a gift. And then the trick. The king so overcome, so impressed by her piece that he offered the world. Half his kingdom, as the saying goes. But that was too much for one dance, and in other ways not enough. So her mother said. Instead she – her mother – asked for something else. Jealousy and fear and simmering anger fuelling the request. The offer had been made and though the king was not happy, though he regretted every word that had dripped from his lips, he had been heard, and had to honour the promise. And so the deed was done, and the platter arrived. And when the cloth was removed there it was… the head of John the Baptist. And her world – the young dancer’s world – fell apart. And so she was on this road, had heard that those kinds of regrets could find a home. A place for laying down, a place large enough for any burden, nothing was too large, too heavy, too atrocious. A place marked with a cross and sealed with an empty tomb. So she had heard, and her face lit up for the first time as she spoke of it. Because she was not on her way there, she had been already. And met a man in a garden, a man brought back up from the depths, once submerged in every single regret, now returned, his hands and smile full of new life and fresh starts.
Mark 6 v 19-28