Everything is Holy Now

As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, I’m presently at the Jesuit Retreat House in OshKosh, directing a directed retreat.

Each day, the directors gather for a team meeting just before lunch. A different person is responsible each day for providing an opening prayer and a subject for sharing.

The other day, one of the Jesuits on the team opened with a song familiar to some of the other team members but not to me: Holy Now, by Peter Mayer. My internet access here is too limited to post a Youtube video of the song, but here are the lyrics:

When I was a boy, each week
On Sunday, we would go to church
And pay attention to the priest
He would read the holy word
And consecrate the holy bread
And everyone would kneel and bow
Today the only difference is
Everything is holy now
Everything, everything
Everything is holy now

When I was in Sunday school
We would learn about the time
Moses split the sea in two
Jesus made the water wine
And I remember feeling sad
That miracles don’t happen still
But now I can’t keep track
‘Cause everything’s a miracle
Everything, Everything
Everything’s a miracle

Wine from water is not so small
But an even better magic trick
Is that anything is here at all
So the challenging thing becomes
Not to look for miracles
But finding where there isn’t one

When holy water was rare at best
It barely wet my fingertips
But now I have to hold my breath
Like I’m swimming in a sea of it
It used to be a world half there
Heaven’s second rate hand-me-down
But I walk it with a reverent air
‘Cause everything is holy now
Everything, everything
Everything is holy now

Read a questioning child’s face
And say it’s not a testament
That’d be very hard to say
See another new morning come
And say it’s not a sacrament
I tell you that it can’t be done

This morning, outside I stood
And saw a little red-winged bird
Shining like a burning bush
Singing like a scripture verse
It made me want to bow my head
I remember when church let out
How things have changed since then
Everything is holy now
It used to be a world half-there
Heaven’s second rate hand-me-down
But I walk it with a reverent air
‘Cause everything is holy now

Ignatian Spirituality is about finding God in all things. As I reflected on this song what came to mind is an expansion of a quote attributed to Albert Einstein: There are two ways to see the world: as though nothing is sacred and as though everything is sacred; as though nothing is a miracle and as though everything is a miracle.

How do you see things?

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