Have We Forgotten About Sundays?
"Sundays are for church, for family, for rest, for God," my father used to tell me on Sunday afternoons, when I was growing up. Because I was young and very active, I could not understand why Sunday afternoons were not about calling friends to see if they could come out and play. It seemed to me like Sunday was a perfectly good day to round up the neighbor kids for tag or kick-the-can. But Sundays were primarily about church and God in my house, because my father was a minister.
As an adult, I can now really appreciate the Christian notion (as directed by God, 'in the beginning') that there should be a single day of the week that is committed to worship, rest, and reflection about our Creator. Monday through Friday, for most of us, is filled to the last minute with work and family obligations. Saturday is the day of rat-racing from sporting events to errands, and from housecleaning to lawn care -- basically, everything that could not be crammed into the work week.
The older I get, the more I need Sunday to be about all of those things my father suggested, when I was a kid. With all of the pressures, stresses, and disappointments that plague me in my daily life, I need to spend one day remembering that God is in control, not me. When I sit in church, peace and comfort wash over me, and I am reminded that I am love, I am blessed, and I am counted as a precious jewel by my Heavenly Father - simply because of grace! These are gifts that we have not earned; they are simply freely given to us.
The Christian observance of Sunday has been devolving. It is being swept under the same rug that now blankets such other things as public prayer, religious symbols of faith, and our willingness to publicly profess our beliefs. It not only tries to hide the light that should be shining for all to see, it intends to smother it, permanently. We Christians are allowing this to happen.
It should be no surprise that the ceremonies to reflect on the tragedy of 9-11, with the tragic loss of thousands of precious American lives, will be held without any acknowledgement of God and faith. Is it a coincidence that the 10 year anniversary of the most horrific attack on our soil should have fallen on a Sunday? Does anyone wonder if God wants us to connect the dots that draw a picture showing us the error in leaving Him out, at this time? On a Sunday? Does anyone wonder how we can get this nation and our broken society back on the right track, without Him? Maybe we should recognize the need to turn toward Him, not away.
There are two decisions that should reveal to the nation, through this memorial event, that this administration is bad for our country: 1) God is not invited; 2) First responders (heroes) are not invited. One might be able to convince themselves that the anniversary falling on a Sunday is just coincidence, but the absence of the 9-11 heroes is a travesty only overshadowed by the gaping absence of God. Undoubtedly, in prominent view for the media coverage, will be many politicians, whether they had anything to do with a personal loss, or heroism, on that day. No, their presence serves a much higher purpose, thus ensuring their invitation to the ceremony - the photo-op that may boost their careers.
As for the rest of us, who were also not invited, I suggest that this Sunday should be restored to the original intent, in my father's words: A day for church, family, rest and reflection. Let us all remember, this memorable Sunday and every day, to pray for God's continuing comfort on those who still grieve, His blessings on those who risked their lives and health to save others, and most of all, God's protection over our nation.