This is the month I focus on gratitude and this is a picture I took some weeks back at Saint Louis Cathedral in New Orleans. Good-humored locals call it “Touch Down Jesus,” — you can see why.
Speaking of Jesus, I’ve got a confession to make. Sundays are the hardest day of the week for me. It shouldn’t be that way. Sundays are for worship, family time and rest. Right? They’re for rejuvenation and spiritual replenishment.
I must do Sundays all wrong because I drag out of church feeling degraded and depleted—spiritually slapped, which of course leads me to feel like smacking my whole family upside the head. And by the end of my “day of rest” I’m worn to the core. I need the other six work days just to recover.
I don’t think that’s how God set Sundays up. I think I’ve messed it all up.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow said, “Sunday is the golden clasp that binds together the volume of the week.”
That’s a lovely sentiment, but for me it feels like that clasp is a scale that weighs my “volume of the week” and finds it pitifully wanting.
So…I did some examination and realized that one of my Sabbath problems is my consistent breaking of the ninth commandment. I blatantly bear false witness on Sunday.
“How are you doing, Toni?” someone asks.
Blood rushes to my frontal cortex where my brain comes up with, “Great. Terrific. Superb.”
Lies. Lies. Lies.
I have great moments. I have terrific times. Once in awhile I feel superb. But I’m not doing great, terrific or superb. Right now, today, I’m all wound up in the metamorphic stage of life when I’m more pupa than butterfly. While I’m not the slug I once was, I’m still cocooned in a mess of my own making, doing everything I can to unravel myself to freedom and flight.
Soon enough, I’ll emerge and be a new creature. But not yet. Not by Sunday. So I’ve decided to tell the truth from now on when someone is kind enough to inquire how I’m doing.
No, I won’t say, “s&**#y” because that’s not true either. Not even close. And no one wants to hear anything beyond, “Fine. Thanks for asking.” While people want to be courteous and caring, they seldom really want to hear the gritty answer to that question.
From now on though, Imma gonna tell the truth in one word: BLESSED.
Blessed. Because that’s what I am. I am blessed beyond measure. Blessed when I don’t deserve to be blessed. Blessed with the chance to change. Blessed with friends and family to help me. And blessed to be a blessing.
So there. One word helps me tell the truth. It changes my attitude. It increases my capacity for gratitude. And while it may not be a complete six-point touchdown, I suspect Jesus will be happy to deem it at least a field goal and give me a couple of points for sincerity and effort, don’t ya think?