Monday, September 3, 2007

Secular Sins

Christians are judgemental, no? That has got to be one of the top ten complaints about Christians. It doesn't help that we, as Christians, are so eager to prove it true. Quibble all you want to about the meaning of Matthew 7:1-2 but you know you do it. I do it, you do it, all God's children do it. I'm doing it right now. But, let's not be too hasty. Christians don't have the only corner on that market. Tune in to a morning news show some time, or maybe Oprah and see if you don't come away feeling as guilty as sin. There are any number of speakers, authors or "experts" only too happy to tell us how to live our lives and woe be it to the individual trying to keep up with these ever changing commandments.

In the spirit of fair play I thought I'd spend some time in confession. I want to confess my sins of commission or omission in the secular realm. I was thinking of beginning this "forgive me AlGore for I have sinned", but that would be going to far, don't you think?

My sins:

1. Recycling. Look, I recycle, I really do. I am a child of the seventies after all. I even remember the original little ecology symbol. It's just, sometimes, when I am overwhelmed by cramming six people's worth of junk into a house meant for four, I might, in a fit of cleaning frenzy, might, actually, throw away a newspaper....or a soda can.

1a. I, overuse, commas.

2. Sunscreen. For one thing, I have been known to use less than 50 spf. For another thing, I don't reapply after one hour. And lastly, if we are going out after 3:00 I don't bother. And for the kids, I would just hit the high spots: shoulders, face, back, chest and arms. Oh, and the tops of their ears, that can be nasty. Try rubbing three children down completely with sunscreen and see if you even make it out of the house before midnight. On the beach, however, we mind our sunscreen p's and q's. Going to the beach is treated like a visit to the sunscreen pope or something. We learned that lesson the hard way. If we are anywhere near the beach everyone takes a bath in sunscreen every hour on the hour. King Sol shows no mercy.

3. Trans fats. Once or twice, Ok, probably dozens of times, I allowed my children to take Lunchables to school for field trip lunches. I have also given in to the hue and cry for Oreos.

4. Christmas. I wish random people a Merry Christmas*. Actually I don't think this is nearly as big a deal as the media makes it out to be. Maybe for a vocal minority. Though maybe, being in the majority, I don't get it. That's always a possibility. No one has wished me a Happy Hanukkah or Kwanzaa yet but if they did, would I be offended? No.

5. Edumacation. I believe five minutes worth of Entertainment Tonight viewing bears this one out. I believe, contrary to what our teachers told us, there ARE stupid questions.

Ok, enough of that. While written with tongue firmly in cheek, some of these I really would like to improve on. Not the Christmas one though. I'm kind of unrepentant on that one. I know if I were to do a little more soul searching that these five would just be the tip of the iceberg. This is all I can manage to do penance for at the moment. Meanwhile, let's all cut each other some slack.

* During the Christmas season.