Saturday, August 22, 2009

Bleached Out

"Jesus lived the ordinary life of the men of His time, in order to sanctify the ordinary lives of the men of all time. If we want to be spiritual, then, let us first of all live our lives."

- Thomas Merton

I was confessing to an adult education class that life can look a little bleached out for pastor when Sunday's just a memory. We speak sacred words, read from sacred texts, often stand in the midst of sacred architecture, and then comes Monday. Of course those men and women struggle with the same sort of thing. They know better than I do the challenge of reconciling a life that looks like ordinary time most of the time, with that one day a week when religion takes the center stage.

Merton simply says true spirituality is locating God in the midst of life. How simple, and how hard. More often than not a believer is one who has outfitted a comfortable corner of his or her life for God, leaving most of it not unlived, but unexamined.

It takes a change of mind to see the ordinary stuff of life as the staging ground for the presence of God. And much of the time we lack the patience for the pursuit.

So here's to enjoying the meal, savoring the sunset, or sitting out under the stars until we learn to see something of the glory among them all.