They’ll know we are Christians by our…props?

People are often extremely surprised to find out how religious I am, and I never know whether to take that as a compliment or an insult. I suppose in this day and age those of us who are religiously observant are somewhat rare in a sampling of my American generation, so maybe the surprise isn’t loaded at all. Maybe it’s just surprise.

I don’t carry a Bible around with me, I don’t dangle my rosary beads, I don’t make it a point to pray where people can see me (I’m pretty sure Jesus said not to do that, anyway). I use my breviary in private and keep it under my bed. That’s my practice, just as others have the practice of toting theirs around. Neither is right or wrong.

There’s a certain “look” that goes with stereotypical religion – or perhaps a certain affect, and it’s one that doesn’t suit me: quiet, deferential, inoffensive. I don’t care for the type of religion that involves preciousness or prissiness. I guess I don’t look the part.

In the end, my faith life is not about how I look to other people, but how other people look to me. It’s a way of looking at the world and seeing sanctity, seeing God’s work and attempting to delight in it as God does. The lens I see the world through is a sacramental one.

Thus everything is holy, and every object becomes one that can lead us deeper into grace. Rosaries to roses, breviaries to baseball cards – all can lead us into prayer, though some do so in a special way.

I’m trying every day to see the grace in all things. I hope this changes my actions so that Christ’s light glows through me. But if it doesn’t, I won’t carry around the trappings in an attempt to make up for it.

I'm obviously not trying to hide anything...just look at my bookshelf.

I’m obviously not trying to hide anything…just look at my bookshelf.

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4 Responses to They’ll know we are Christians by our…props?

  1. Kevin says:

    Oh that we would all see the world as a sacrament…..

  2. diane rivers says:

    Looking at the world and seeing sanctity. I love that – I need to practice it more!

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