It has been my experience that sometimes the rhythm of the year itself can offer healing and consolation to our hearts. Take for instance the changing of the seasons. Or simply the landscape that nature affords us in the difference of night and day. The rhythm of the church year can be viewed in much the same way. The church itself seems to be “status quo” in many ways, yet in many Protestant and Catholic traditions the church year celebrates its own spiriutal and physical journey which revolves around the birth, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
When I step “outside of the church” into my own way of being, I get drawn up into my own self and less into that of others. When I make that extra effort to “step into the church” I am once again reminded that I am not my own…that I belong to Christ, to God, and yes…to the church, the faith community. However I can best weave that story into my life. This means that when the church celebrates a “church season” of the year, then I am caught up in that same movement. Just as much as if it a “family birthday party” (which it is when Pentecost arrives….the birthday of the church!)
Each celebration that the church or faith community has is important. Just as it is important to share even a small amount of food with a friend or to remember someone’s birthday. If a birthday card is important to receive, and brings happiness to the heart, how much greater it is to share our time and talets with those God has called to receive from us! Spiritual Celebrations of scripture, music, prayer, table-time, mission, community parties, and a constant seeking for aligning oursevles with that which brings our hearts joy along with God’s purpose for our lives.
As we move (in the USA) from July into August and toward a new school year and “season” for many, let us not forget that our hearts need celebrations that bring us comfort. That it is possible to celebrate one small thing each day, or each week which will bring us courage to move forward into the rhythm of life and faith. And to discern where God calls us. For it may be that in the preparation for “celebration” that our hearts are changed and we become a new people of God.
(c) 2015 Janine C. Hagan. All Rights Reserved.