Saturday, March 31, 2018

Stripping The Altar

On Holy Thursday, two days ago in Christian circles, the altar is "stripped."  A strange word.  Why don't they simply say, "Everything is removed."  I have an idea.  When you remove your clothes, you do so with your own consent.  You will it, and you do it so as to avoid embarrassment.  Stripped is different.  You don't strip yourself.  Someone else does.  It is against your will and it is embarrassing. You are seen as you truly are, blemishes, and warts, and all.  So what might be the point?  The point, maybe for all of us, is to at some time strip yourself of all that hides who you know yourself to be both the good and the not so good.  I don't mean outer garments, but the ways that we cover up our faults and shortcomings.  Then take a good look at yourself and admit your imperfections.  Two things can come from this.  Honesty is the door opener to becoming a better person.  You are embarrassed to be so short of what you know you could be.  Secondly, at least for believers, is that God knew all along your shortcomings and still loves you.  Jews and Christians know this, so why do they hide from even themselves who they truly are in their less attractive aspects?  This weekend is both Easter and Passover.  It is a good time for believers to take a good look at themselves.  It is always a good time for AA people in recovery to do the same.  They have steps four and five for that.  Talk about embarrassing honesty!  But it is the doorway to new life.

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