After the foundation was laid, they began to sing and shout with joy. The older members of the community, who still remembered what it had been like to worship in the temple before it was destroyed, began to weep. While some of those tears may have been sadness for their loss, mostly those tears were ones of joy for renewed hope in the future.
For most of human history, people centered their common life in the place of worship. Generally, it was the only real gathering place in the community anyway, and it served many different purposes. Above all, it was the place to offer transcendence, i.e., a place to ponder eternal things, become more aware of the holiness of God, receive mercy as was needed, and find strength and encouragement to go and build just societies.
These are almost strange concepts in a world that is driven by consumption and personal satisfaction. But without time taken to worship God and seek both mercy for ourselves and a more just society for all, we risk losing one of the defining points of being human: an awareness that the world is much larger than we are and that we have responsibility to live faithfully to a larger moral order. Otherwise, we forget God and our world collapses into the horror of pure selfishness. That, my friends, is one definition of hell. And it is horrible to contemplate.
Now, here in this area north of
This Sunday, January 20, we will officially break ground on the lovely 10 acre plot of land between NorthStar Bank and