If you didn’t catch Ridley Scott’s Life in a Day when it was released, it’s now on Netflix. It’s that movie made of hundreds of home movies from all over the world, clipped together, to make a complete picture of human life in one day. People sleep, go about their morning routines, play with their kids, go to work, worship and pray, have dinner with family, and all the other imaginable human activities.
It’s kind of a remarkable movie, if only because it’s a film made of a bunch of smaller films that no one would ever want to watch.
But it also made me think. What does a day in my life look like? What about yours?
And more importantly is this: Christians boast that Jesus is the most important part of our lives. But is he this most important part of our days?
A Day In My Life
What would a day in my life look like? I get up around 6 am. I dress in a shirt and tie and go to work. I stay there for eight or nine hours, work hard, and drink coffee. On the way home, I go to the chiropractor or the grocery store. I get home and write a blog entry. Sometimes, I make dinner, or we eat out. Thursday is frozen pizza night. When my wife gets home, we read together or watch some TV while doing housework.
You could say that my day is extremely typical.
Sure, there are some disruptions to the schedule. I go to church every Sunday. That’s a couple of hours, or 1.19% of my week. On Friday afternoon or Saturday morning, I’m preparing a lesson for church. That’s another 2%. While I’m getting ready in the morning, I say some prayers for the day. Another 1%. Every once in a while, I’ll do a good Christian deed.
But except for some Jesus sprinkled here and there, yes, my day doesn’t look a whole lot different from any ordinary, non-Christian.
It makes me wonder if Jesus were watching a movie of my life, would he say, “Even the pagans do that!”
Even the Pagans Do That
We’re a week away from Christmas, and I really am feeling good about it this year. I have tried to soak in the meaningfulness of the holiday. Our gifts are wrapped and under the tree. I am enjoying family gatherings. I am eating too many cookies. I tried to spread Christmas cheer by doing something charitable for less fortunate people. On Christmas Eve, we will go to church.
So what? Even the pagans do that.
Seriously, while too many of us are concerned about forcing store cashiers to say “Merry Christmas,” to “preserve” our holiday, we’re celebrating the holiday no differently than anyone else.
Christians are putting up lights and buying gifts and overeating just like anyone else. What’s that? You say you’re going to church on Christmas? So what? You’ve been to church on Christmas. It’s packed with people who don’t go to church any other day of the year. Yes, even the pagans go to church on Christmas. You don’t get credit for that.
Oh, you say that you put some cash in a red kettle, or you helped out a down-on-their-luck family? Well ooh-la-dee-da. Plenty of non-Christians have the human decency to help the less fortunate without Jesus telling them to.
Even the Pagans are Christian
Something happened when we became a “Christian” nation. The idea of what made a Christian “Christian” got watered down. There was a time when being a Christian meant you were different. And if you weren’t Christian enough, you got kicked out. Now, everything is “between you and God,” and faith is a “private” thing. And America has become a place where all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, all the children are above-average, and even all the pagans are somewhat Christian. Even atheists like NFQ last Friday said she accepts and lives by many Judeo-Christian values. So what makes me a Christian now?
I go to church? I don’t beat my wife or drink too much? I give away a few bucks? I watch my language? I hold the elevator door for strangers? I say “Merry Christmas?” I accept others as they are and try not to be too judgmental?
So what? Even the pagans do that. In some cases, the pagans are doing better than us.
What do you think? How can Christians make Christmas a Christian holiday again? What can we do to make ourselves different again? How much of your day is different because you’re a Christian?
This post is sponsored by Ministry Matters.