Thursday, December 22, 2011
The coming of God into the world as a human being, to experience life as we do and to make the same journey as we towards death, is a great challenge to us to be conscious of our bodies. Christianity has not always seen the body as good and often as a negative force with its desires. Other religions have dietary understanding, physical regimens for meditation or defense. Christianity has coffee hours and perhaps the aerobics of standing, kneeling and sitting for those of the Episcopal tradition. How we move and breath and have our being in our bodies is crucial to our faith. It is not simply about denial or controlling unwanted desires; but about how we stretch, eat, move and relate with each other. It is in our body that we experience the joy of the Lord, not just as an intellectual thought. So often we mistake right thinking with right living. Change in how we understand our bodies is not just discovered by rigid discipline but also by loving acceptance and experience of more wonderous ways than the self destructive paths of our addictive habits and avoidances of discomfort or pain.
The season of the incarnation or Christmas is a wonderful time to reconnect ourselves with our body. It is in this journey, our mortal path, that we are able to come to know and experience the love and restorative forgiveness of God in Jesus.