For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. – Romans 3:23 (NIV)
Sin is often hidden. It sits in the back of our closet, unnoticed, unused, till the end times come and one of our offspring or Mr. Cleanout finds it. Sin keeps us from enjoying God’s glory.
One woman decided to not let her wedding dress stay hidden. As one of the many people who get divorced, she had done a lot of therapy about the marriage that ended. She was clear divorce was the right thing to do; she just couldn’t discard the wedding dress. When she got an invite to her best friend’s daughter’s wedding, she offered her the hand-me-down, which was accepted.
Divorce is not a sin. Separation happens. Reluctance is not a sin. Indecision happens. Sin is common in small and large ways. It often has to do with hanging on and hoarding instead of letting go and sharing.
I wish that some of the thousands of churches who are going to close in the next five years were bold enough to give their property away to a congregation of new immigrants or a tiny house project or housing for disabled veterans.
When we sing the lyrics of “Be Thou My Vision”—“Thou mine inheritance, now and always”—we can mean it.
Merciful God, you give us one chance after another for a hand up, not a handout, just a hand up so we can hand out our power and spread it around.
Donna Schaper works nationally for Bricks and Mortals, a NYC-based organization that provides sustainable solutions for sacred sites. Her newest book is Remove the Pews: Spiritual Possibilities for Sacred Spaces, from The Pilgrim Press.