Connecting Faith and Life

The Guideposts editor-in-chief reflects on how two occurrences reminded him to connect spiritually.

 

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Rushing across 30th Street on my way to work this morning I was about to pass St. John the Baptist Church when a runner coming in my direction paused in front of the church gate, jogged in place and made the sign of the cross before continuing his run. A few minutes later, riding the crowded elevator to my office, we stopped on a lower floor occupied by a Jewish law firm. Several workers got out, each quickly touching the angled mezuzah affixed to the firm’s doorway. 

America is described as a religious country; most of us go to church or temple. But more importantly—and more accurately, I think—we are a country of religious liberty, free to practice (or not practice) our faith openly without fear of persecution. Nothing brought more brilliant clarity to this fact than the inauguration last week of a man of mixed religious birth who found his own faith as an adult and now leads this country where faith is so integral a part of daily life. 

I was raised Catholic and we were taught to always make the sign of the cross or bow our heads when we passed a church, as a show of respect and humility. Jews brush the mezuzah with their fingertips to acknowledge God’s blessings. Arriving at my desk that morning I vowed to take better note of the outward signs I make of my inner relationship with God and practice them more diligently. Isn’t that what we strive for, after all, to connect our spiritually-based values and beliefs with our daily lives? And that is what these two small occurrences on my way to work this morning reminded me.

I’d love to know the small outward things you do to acknowledge and celebrate your relationship with God daily. So post a few below. By the way, did you ever wonder why a mezuzah is always placed at an angle? Ancient Rabbis could not agree on whether to affix the small, ornate case containing a parchment scroll with verses from the Torah horizontally or vertically so they compromised.

Edward Grinnan is Editor-in-Chief and Vice President of GUIDEPOSTS Publications.

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