Monday, May 28, 2012
A thought-provoking Sabbath
It was so good to return to some normalcy on the Sabbath after a few weeks of ... well, not doing the normal Sunday things. Like going to church. I hadn't been to church in three weeks and really missed the time of worship as well as my church family! I've also missed the first three parts of a thought-provoking sermon series on the story of our lives, based on the topic of a Donald Miller (Blue Like Jazz) conference our minister, Tom Fodi, recently attended in Portland, Oregon. As a writer, I'm all about the story, so I really love that he's preaching this series. Yesterday's focus on conflict and stress, and how important they are in creating a story of interest, was well done, to say the least. It seems we're all looking for stress-free, peaceful lives, but when you think about it, how does a life like that serve to create change in the world around us? If our focus is to live peacefully, our focus is inward and not about the outward big picture. Don't you think?
Of course, my life would be more serene if I didn't care about getting the word out there about the evils of Monsanto and the other corporate giants who are producing products harmful to us. If I shut up about GMOs, BPA and other toxins, I could retreat into a complacent coma and affect zero change in the world around me. But at least I'd be happy, right? Folks, I think we have it all backwards. That is my problem with religions focusing on inner peace and revolving around self. Christianity is revolutionary and involves serving and loving and creating change in the world. Of course, there are many who have hidden behind the shield of Christianity and created havoc with hatred and self-righteousness, judgmental spirits. I shudder when I hear about the paths of destruction left behind by Christians on their high horses.
Christianity was never meant to be a religion, folks. It was supposed to be all about relationship. Relationship with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Relationship with each other. Relationship with those who think alike ... and those who don't. It's about love, and for those of you who have been hurt any of us who represent Christ, I truly apologize. Sometimes we are misguided. We misinterpret what the Bible says. We seek self instead of selflessness. We deliver judgment rather than grace.
Wow. This isn't where I meant to go with today's reflection on my Sabbath Experience. But maybe it is exactly where I was supposed to go. Tomorrow, I'll share my thoughts on last evening's date night with my husband. Dinner and a movie ... a movie that had a profound impact on me and is changing the way I look at things ... at least a little bit.
To my American friends, have a safe and happy Memorial Day. And to all of you in other countries, may freedom reign where you are!