Today, tens of millions of people are awake and ready. They are waiting for something great to happen. They are cooking special foods and are preparing their homes for great feasts and the ultimate event of the new year.
Some of us are preparing for the Superbowl. True fans have finally come to this momentous day filled with great hopes and anticipation that their team will win to rule the world of football for one year. They hope and pray that their team will provide them with eternal bragging rights and great stories of heroic feats that led to gridiron glory and honor.
A lot of us could not care less about the Superbowl, either because our teams are not there, to get a taste of honor and glory, or because we hate football and have other things to do on such a fine, fine day.
At any rate, it is still Sunday, and many church leaders will pretend to be tone deaf to other people’s plans for the day. Some church leaders or major players will demand that the parishioners stay under the clutches of the church rather than enjoying the game. The second battle ensues, often with great tactic and hilarity.
Thus, a second great battle will go on between those who intend to watch the Superbowl and those who want to keep people in the clutches of the church, long after the shows of faith, rituals and weekly lessons are done.
We will not discuss the employers who intrude into the Sundays of their employees, sometimes with proper intentions, and sometimes with no idea about the meaning of a weekend off from work.
Many of us will see Sunday as a day of rest and recreation. Some will seek to honor the mythology that God rested on the 7th day. Others have already taken their rest on Saturday, which was the seventh day that worked perfectly well until Pope Gregory came along and imposed his ideas about calendars on the world.
This makes us wonder why an outdated pope still rules over the length of our calendar month and the number of months in a year!
Many of us will think of God. We try to separate the nonsense from the truth about just what it is that pleases God. We will deal with people who try to convince us that they have the answers. We don’t know whether they have the answers because the final answers have not been given yet.
Some people are dysfunctional and will never stop telling the rest of us that we will go directly to hell with no mitigation and no mercy because they do not believe that God has a capacity to forgive that is beyond human comprehension. Others will tell us what Jesus said: that blasphemy against God is the only mortal sin.
A third great battle will go on today. This battle is never limited to an annual event, but is permanently and constantly engaged. This battle is fought by two types of human monsters: the religious and the secular, who want to gain supremacy in the world.
And there will be a third battle today between the myth bearers and dogmatics and the rest of us. The rest of us simply want to be in service to, and faith in a God who exists to rule over us. Jesus was here to put us all together under better and kinder rules of the game, and his are the rules that we use as guides.
Today is not just Superbowl Sunday. Today is also Happy Sunday, a day of trying to achieve a proper balance between rest, fellowship, worship, and time with family and friends.
Today, there will be one battle that is symbolic and plays out on a grass field. There will also be battles that are supernatural and will be fought with spirits, behavior, and psyche. There will be battles in the truest sense. These will be fought with real weapons and real people will die.
We live in the real world. We live in the spiritual world. We live in worlds of our own making. We are spectacular and awful creations of God. We have self determination and free will. Sunday is a day of rest, a day of recreation, a day of rejuvenation, and a day to think of our relationship with our creator.