by Francisco Garcia
“In every moment something sacred is at stake.”
This statement from the Jewish scholar and Rabbi, Abraham Joshua Heschel, is one of most powerful statements of faith that I have ever heard. I first learned of it when taking a class from our Rector, Ed Bacon, over a decade ago, when I had recently arrived as a newcomer seeking a spiritual home. I was hungry for a meaningful and engaging faith community, and I quickly found it at All Saints.
The phrase has stuck with me years later, as I have found it to be profoundly true and revelatory. Being able to see the world, my relationships, literally everything about my life in this manner catapulted me into a great spiritual awakening. With this awakening also came an incredible restlessness with the passive way that I was living. As I began to reflect on my life and re-read the scriptures and the life of Jesus, suddenly I began to see things that I had merely glossed over, with a great intensity. It came to a head with my struggles at work with a difficult, punitive boss that demanded so much of my time and energy without much recognition. The situation took on a deeper meaning and required a spiritual response. Why was I spending so much of my emotional, physical, and intellectual energy in this place that was not feeding my spirit? I began to make plans to leave, and within a few months, a much more supportive and fruitful job opportunity emerged.
Every life transaction or encounter in life–from the major events to the mundane activities of daily living–are opportunities to engage with the divine within and around us. Chances are that we will spend many moments of our lives failing to recognize this simple truth. But the more we work at it, and are intentional and open to observing this truth, the more apparent that it becomes. Once we have acknowledged the sacredness of every moment, we cannot turn back.
This weekend we will observe Palm and Passion Sunday, where we begin that difficult walk with Jesus to the cross. The great witness and triumph of Jesus is that he lived his life so full of intentional and embodied love–that he modeled for us the way. He knew every moment that he had to share with his disciples and with the world was sacred, and he did not forfeit this gift. The resurrection that will come is God’s message signifying to us that the sacredness of life cannot be broken by death, not even on a cross. Life and love prevail. I invite you to think about what is at stake for you in this moment.
Where is God calling you in this story? What challenges or moves you? This Holy Week and Easter, may we be moved to find our way with renewed vision and spirit. I pray that we are moved to a place of openness, awe and wonder at the sacredness of this moment, and every moment.