Welcome to the second day of the Dormition Fast! The wisdom of the fasting disciplines of the Church are meant to reinforce the reality that unless the faith is holistically practiced, that is it affects every aspect of your person, the real danger of compartmentalization exists!
In my opinion, this is the greatest source for a nominal Christian faith. This idea that the faith is only one part of my life. When, in fact, the Faith IS my life. A wise man once told me “God isn’t all you need until He’s all you want!”
How do we break the back of this constant modern temptation?
We do it by staying awake to all the ways we are tempted to shelve our faith away from every aspect of our lives.
Listen to our Lord this morning in our Gospel Lesson: “Have you not read this scripture: ‘The very stone which the builders rejected has become the head of the corner; this was the Lord’s doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes’?” (read the whole lesson at Mark 12:1-12)
The path to allowing the faith to inform and educate and transfigure every aspect of our lives; our homes, our relationships, our careers, our priorities, who we marry, what we do, choices we make, and on and on; is staying awake to the marvelous doings of the Lord!
If I stay awake and aware of the Lord’s daily love for me, His actions every morning, His mercies every night, I can’t help but allow that marvelous reality to seep into every part of my life.
Here we are approaching the Feast of the Dormition of the Theotokos. We are praying the Paraklesis every day (aren’t we?). We are reminded that God untied the knots of the Fall by choosing His servant Mary to take His flesh from one of us and come into His creation to redeem us all, to reverse death and grant the whole universe His life. Marvelous!
God, over and over again, has even met us in every Eucharistic liturgy to give us Himself as real food and real drink to satisfy our true hunger and thirst. Marvelous!
He has daily granted us our very lives and lips that we are called to use in praise of Him, not for His benefit, but for ours! Marvelous!
Today, when was the last time you really spent time marveling at God’s mercy and love toward you? If you ever keep that sense of marvel about His wisdom and this faith, you will watch as every part of your life, all your priorities, and your very self, becomes transformed by His marvelous acts. This is the Lord’s doing and it is marvelous in our eyes!
By the way, go to http://www.goarch.org/chapel/liturgical_texts/paraklesis and pray the Paraklesis every day as we keep the Dormition Fast on purpose! It’s marvelous!