Tuesday, November 20, 2007

10 Years

Today is the ten-year anniversary of our church.

Over my brief life as an Orthodox Christian I have learned that the Orthodox have certain ways of phrasing things. When speaking of Mary, I don't just say "Mary," or even "the Blessed Virgin," but rather, "the Theotokos." I rarely use the name of Jesus unless I'm praying, but more often "Christ" or "Our Lord" in conversation. In a casual exchange with a WalMart cashier, I might say "Thank God," "God Willing," or "Glory to God" just as easily as I might say "Have a nice day."

Although some might say it is a mere habit, I think it is a conscious decision to acknowledge God as my Author and Creator.

If I call something a "coincidence," or if the words "Good luck" ever cross my lips (!) I feel like I have committed blasphemy. So if I want to talk of an interconnected series of events that might have produced a favorable or interesting conclusion, I instead use the very pious sounding word, "Providence."

Of course the smarty pants priest I live with messes up my pious feelings by saying, "Actually if you acknowledge God is God, then everything is Providence, and what you're trying to say makes no sense."

But anyway, today is the tenth anniversary of the beginning of our little church, St Elizabeth the New Martyr. The Gospel reading today was Luke 14: 25-35. This is the part I find to be applicable to our anniversay (i.e. providential):

And whoever does not bear his cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple. For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost, whether he has enough to finish it--lest, after he has laid the foundation, and is not able to finish it, all who see it begin to mock him, saying, 'This man began to build and was not able to finish...'

And that's all I really wanted to say.