Tag Archives: mundane

Making the Secular Sacred

mowingIn the Church in the time of Martin Luther, there was a stark division between the sacred and the secular. Only the priest could do the “holy” things. The laity went about their tasks disconnected from any tie to their faith.

But Martin Luther brought the sacred and the secular back together. He pointed out that the tasks of the laity were just a holy as the tasks of the priests and reintroduced the concept of the priesthood of all believers.

Luther wrote:

…the works of monks and priests, however holy and arduous they may be, do not differ on whit in the sight of God from the works of the rustic laborer in the field or the woman going about her household tasks…all works are measured before God by faith alone. (The Babylonian Captivity of the Church).

Dr. Erik Hermann in his “Reformation Reverberations: The Lasting Impact of Martin Luther’s Reforms” presentation at Concordia Seminary-St. Louis, referred to this the sacralization of the secular.

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In doing research for a Bible study, I ran across this passage about a man named Epaphroditus, whom St. Paul calls “my brother, co-worker and fellow soldier, who is also your messenger, whom you sent to take care of my needs” (Philippians 2:25). Now that’s a lot of jobs for one person!

But it make me think that we have a lot of jobs too in our lives—jobs that are not exclusively related to our profession or paid occupation. We call these many callings in various aspects of our lives vocations.

vocationThe idea of vocation is central to the Christian belief that God has created each person with gifts and talents oriented toward specific purposes and a way of life.

So when I think about my vocations, my callings from God, I consider my role as a editor of religious writing, a Bible study leader, a work colleague, a son, a brother, an uncle, a nephew, a cousin and a friend.

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The Day of Small Things

For whoever has despised the day of small things shall rejoice. Zechariah 4:10a

I ran across this verse recently and it spoke to me somehow. Maybe it is because I feel like I am immersed in day after day of “small things,” the mundane tasks that need to get done.

doing laundryEngaging in the “small things” of life over and over again like doing laundry, paying bills, cooking meals, mowing the lawn, opening the garage, gassing up the car, running errands can wear me down sometimes.

So I find solace in the fact that the book of Zechariah acknowledges that there are those who have “despised the day of small things.” I am not alone!

Yet Zechariah assures us that we despisers of small things will rejoice. Why? Because the eyes of the Lord will “range through the whole earth“ (Zechariah 4:10b).

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