All of the Sacred, All Around You
I feel like Advent is the perfect season to slip between the sacred and not-sacred easily and quickly without even realizing it. Many of us feel things more deeply during these times of year, especially so close to Christmas.
But for centuries Christians have been taught something absolutely awful and dangerous about the difference between what is sacred, and what isn't.
When I was young, I knew a lot of Christians who were keen on identifying what they considered "secular," and by "secular" they meant whatever they deemed was "of the world."
The term "of the world" referred to anything that would keep you off the straight and narrow.
For example... Rock and roll music was "of the world." So was going to movies, beer commercials, beer, other forms of alcohol, smoking, dancing, thinking about dancing, watching other people dance, gambling, the political party we don't agree with... there were lots of things considered "of the world."
The thing is, I still hear this language today from a large number of my Christian friends, who live and move in the kinds of faith communities that seem to value separation from the culture within which they happen to live.
This is a shame, because that's not how God intended us to live. The Apostle Paul exhorted his readers to embrace all the good things in the world, to value things that were beautiful and true, and to know that they, too, came from God.
Fr. Richard Rohr puts it like this:
Thus, there are not sacred and profane things, places and moments. There are only sacred things and desecrated things, places and moments--and we alone can desecrate them by our blindness and lack of reverence. It is one sacred universe, and we are all a part of it.May you spend the remaining days of this Advent season blurring the lines between what you thought was sacred and not-sacred. Discover the sacredness of all things around you, and know that whatever is good, beautiful and true is imbued with a Divine spark.
And may the grace and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you know and always. Amen.