August Pastor’s Pen

There is an old Garfield cartoon where Jon and Garfield go to the beach. Jon says something to Garfield about not seeming to be having a good time, and Garfield responds with something like, “Put on a heavy fur coat at the beach and see how much fun you have!”
Welcome to the dog days of August.
August is a month where we expect certain things to happen. It is supposed to be hot and muggy and hot and dry and just plain hot – hence dog days of August, where even a dog is smart enough to lie in the shade and do nothing. Families run off to the beach or mountains or other favorite spot for one last getaway before school starts back. Baseball races are starting to sort themselves out, football is about to begin, and the first Christmas displays and commercials are just around the corner (I kid you not!).
August is also something of an in-between month. It’s summer, but the Fall clothes are out. It’s vacation time, but it’s back to school time. It’s hot, but it’s time to check the size of the wood pile or state of the furnace. And all in a month named after Caesar Augustus, augustus being the Latin word for sacred or grand.
Does August feel sacred to you? I sometimes wonder if our understanding of sacred has waned over the last 50 years or so. To me, sacred carries with it something of a feeling – great worth, importance, holiness. Definitely something of God. These dog days are days that have been touched by God. All of creation is touched by God. You and I are touched by God. There is a sacredness in everything and everyone. If you have lost this awareness…it is time to reclaim it.
In Romans 14.5-6, Paul says, “One person considers one day more sacred than another; another considers every day alike. Each of them should be fully convinced in their own mind. Whoever regards one day as special does so to the Lord.” (NIV) Is Sunday more special to you, or are all days the same? Is Christmas a better day than the rest, or does every day bring joy? Paul’s encouragement is that when the day comes…live it to the Lord. Invite God into every day, fully into every day, and live these days as sacred days that are shared with and blessed by God.
In other words, walk with God in every moment whether the moment is good, bad, or indifferent, and find in each day a deeper relationship with God who wants nothing more than to delight in you in every moment.
It’s the dog days of August. But even these days are sacred. God is with you. Be with God.

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