High of 5 tomorrow with very low wind chills and ice/snow (where I currently live)...
The cold weather has definitely quickly jolted me back to the reality that school starts up again on Monday. (Vacations always pass much too fast.) And, while I'm looking forward to seeing the students again, I have to keep things in perspective - they'll probably be pretty tired/crazy/wired coming off a two week break.
But before the thoughts of school dance in my head tonight - that's if I can fall asleep in the first place - I want to touch on the homily the visiting priest at my school's parish touched upon during his homily today (which he tied in rather nicely to the Epiphany). He started with a very brief story of a man in WWII who heard the steel guitar for the first time while over there. Upon his return, he wanted his sons to learn the steel guitar, as he was fascinated by and fixated on it. What was something some intriguing that the man would do everything to make sure his sons learned how to play that instrument? (It's kind of like how the Magi were fixated on that star...) He went on to explain that those two boys were Santo and Johnny Farina, a rock and roll duo probably best known for the song "Sleep Walk."
The priest then transitioned into the idea of sleep walking through our faith - in other words, going to Mass on Sundays, saying our prayers, etc. but out of routine more than anything else. That's not what Christ came into this world for, is it? He went on a little more about this idea, and after his homily, in place of the Nicene Creed, he had us think of a plan of action we can take in our everyday lives so as not to sleep walk through our faith this year.
Naturally, I thought of some resolutions I had already made about praying a decade of the Rosary every day, keeping a gratitude journal, and trying to attend evening Mass and/or adoration at least once a month. I believe these are concrete, simple actions I can take to be more awake and alive in my faith this year.
But it will be a day-by-day effort, and there will be many opportunities to likely say no or forget about these actions. It's essential to remember, however, that faith needs to be a conscious action, not just a set of motions we do because we have to follow the rules.
Awaken us, O Lord. Fill us with your love. Amen.