Things Look Different Today

No, not in the light of the election yesterday. But in the light of the sun. Sunday marked the return of Eastern Standard Time to my world. As I walked into church Sunday morning, I thought “Wow it looks different!” The sun was shining in my eyes and the world was bright. I had grown used to the morning twilight of recent weeks as I drove our son to school and then shambled into the office.

What a difference turning the clocks back an hour makes. At dinner time the difference will be there, too, as darkness covers the evening meal that was eaten in broad daylight not so long ago. What a simple act, turning back the clocks. Just an hour. But how different things look.

And how disorienting it is! My sleep is still a little off as my body continues to think it is Daylight Saving Time.

As I think today about church – worship, meetings, studies, groups – I think the same ought to be true. Just an hour. But it ought to change our perspective. It ought to disorient us a little as our comfortable assumptions are challenged and our faith is renewed by exercising and stretching it.

Faith IS a comfort and ought to be. But if that is all it is… faith puts us to sleep rather than waking us up and changing us as it should.

I leave you with my favorite quote on the subject of church:

On the whole, I do not find Christians, outside the catacombs, sufficiently sensible of the conditions. Does any-one have the foggiest idea what sort of power we so blithely invoke? Or, as I suspect, does no one believe a word of it? The churches are children playing on the floor with their chemistry sets, mixing up a batch of TNT to kill a Sunday morning. It is madness to wear ladies’ straw hats and velvet hats to church; we should all be wearing crash helmets. Ushers should issue life preservers and signal flares; they should lash us to our pews. For the sleeping god may wake some day and take offense, or the waking god may draw us out to where we can never return.

Annie Dillard, Teaching a Stone to Talk, Harper & Row, 1982



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