Thursday, November 30, 2006

First Sunday of Advent - C3

Year C
1 Thessalonians 3:9-13


Holiness is not limited to Blamelessness.

Faith is not something whumped up by pulling on our own bootstraps. It is a response to face-to-face community with G*D, with another.

Love for one another is not a commodity with the usual rules of an economy. It is a gift with no obligations involved.

To focus on these three realities for a whole year would do most individuals and congregations a world of benefit and increase their capacity for joy.

All too often we lose sight of holiness by hiding behind a rule or law, pulling the mores over our head. Then we fight over our particularities and peculiarities. Looking at great religious figures, we find holiness more generally recognized after the fact rather than while they are stretching whatever current limitations they are dealing with.

Faith as gift, rather than assent to the logic of some particular construct of meaningful meaning that has an a priori good which is basically unexaminable, raises possibilities of moving from constraint to a new heaven and earth. Faith, as gift, does put us in situations where fear and trembling would hold sway forever, and then blazes a new path.

Love finds similar limitations based on expectations of benefit from same. It is difficult to sustain a loving attitude that doesn't simply satisfy a hormonal pleasure surge or some desired level of comfortable predictability. To find a blessing of a God, whose name and nature is Love, entering and passing through one disconcerts our desire for control. It overwhelms us and those we encounter and in so doing scares us into limiting it or frees us into expanding it.

= = = = = = =

Go ahead and blame all you want
as for all my various "me's", we will choose holiness
and claim faith in love beyond everything

holiness in self, in God, in others
faith from God, from others, from self
love to others, to self, to God

Faith, Holiness, Love - these three
and the greatest is each.

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