And most certainly, God is found in the commonplace. We need only
look beyond what we expect, to see the unexpected. We need only
to listen beyond the noise, to hear the music of life. We need
only to feel beyond our barriers, to touch another soul with
Compassion is our heartfelt response to another person’s pain or
suffering. A range of emotions becomes amplified when
compassion is in play: sympathy, sadness, affection, anger,
guilt, and concern are just a few.
In the Christian tradition joy occupies a privileged place as
the register of the good news. Savoring that we are born in
the image of God, recalling that our failures can be forgiven,
sharing in the community of faith— in all these realizations our
response is a healing movement of joy.
Unity—solidarity, forms of justice expressed through the love
that nourishes our spirits. Justice moves us beyond our
small worlds into the larger world of God’s amazing love and
grace. We get to participate with the Lover of the Universe
in the cause of bringing forth the reign of God which Jesus has
When we are searching for meaning, searching for the sacred, the
holy, searching for life abundant, we would do well to remember
Zechariah. That said, our spiritual search does not always
lead down an easy path, sometimes taking us to places we never
intended to go and that turn out to be quite difficult. We
need God’s help, just as Zechariah and Elizabeth did.
God probably has plenty of reasons to be angry with us; yet
instead, God continually works for peace, justice and mercy in
our human lives. When we have completely failed, God brings
comfort and challenges us to start again: every day is a fresh
start with God.
Ubuntu is an idea present in African spirituality– the essence of
being human. We are all connected. You can’t exist as a human
being in isolation. We cannot be ourselves without community;
health and faith are always lived out among others, an
individual’s well being is caught up in the well-being of others.
Practicing our faith can be a vigorous workout. When Paul
writes to the Christians in Thessalonike, he is encouraging them
to not get too lethargic in their faith practice, but rather to
live out their convictions with energy and vitality.
Generosity is the habit of giving without expecting anything in
return. It can involve offering time, assets or talents to
aid someone in need or to a cause that warms our hearts and
fulfills our call to be the Risen Christ in our world.
We are all prone to worship shiny things. It takes
intention and determination to consistently remember God’s claim
on our lives. Simply recognizing and naming our idol is a
first step. Working to move away from shiny things and
toward God’s desires for us is the next step. Recognizing
our need for God when we weaken is a third step.