My Musings

Holiness Awareness Month?

Holiness Awareness Month?

What is it about October? So far, I have heard that October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Domestic Violence Awareness Month and “Infant/Pregnancy Loss and SIDS Awareness Month!” The ribbons are out in force.

GOOD! I respect our freedom to advocate and promote causes of conviction. I say, give the people their voice and more power to them! Just keep it kind and honest, whether you agree or not.

I saw a list of commemorative causes (listed by the month in which they are celebrated) and October has more official cause designations than any other month (14). The month of May comes in second with eleven designated causes, including National Guide-Dog Month and National Bike Month. Did you know that September is National Honey Month! SWEET!

Here are the official causes of conviction for October:

  • National Book Month
  • National Work and Family Month
  • Breast Cancer Awareness Month
  • Infant/Pregnancy Loss and SIDS Awareness Month
  • Domestic Violence Awareness Month
  • National Cyber-Security Awareness Month
  • Black History Month
  • Filipino American History Month
  • Polish American Heritage Month
  • LGBT History Month
  • National Bullying Prevention Month
  • American Pharmacist Month
  • National Physical Therapy Month
  • National Spina Bifida Awareness Month
  • Whew! Just reading the list makes me tired. Of course, not every “official” cause is worth celebrating just like not every “popular” book is worth reading. But many are and as Americans we are free to choose. Here’s my point: Make some choices and take a stand! Be less critical and more constructive; less angry and more aware; less apathetic and more active. Theodore Roosevelt, in his 1910 speech titled, “Citizenship in a Republic,” put it this way:

      The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly… who spends himself for a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat.

    Designating a month for moral conviction is a strategy to concentrate our attention and mobilize our energy. Christians designate “traditional” times of the year to celebrate Jesus’ birth, death and resurrection. We call for 40-day prayer vigils, wear pins and ribbons and plan mission trips. But Christian conviction runs deeper than strategy. It is not reserved to any particular day, week, month or year. It cannot be reduced to pins, ribbons or bumper-stickers. Our entire lives must be reserved (set apart) for Christian conviction. “Set apart” is the literal definition of the word holy. Being holy means your heart and your life are reserved (set apart) fully for God—24/7.

    There is no National Holiness Month on the list. I don’t mind. There is something oxymoronic about setting apart a certain month for being “set apart” (holy) to God. Christians were not made holy just to go around saying “whatever” to the challenges of this world (or the next for that matter). So, make a choice. Forge a strategy. Take a stand! But don’t sanctify your strategy or worship your own conviction. Even noble causes can become idols if we put them above God.

    “Holiness awareness” begins with the words of Jesus at Mark 12:30:

      Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.

    October is as good a month as any to begin doing that!

     

    Photo Credits

    Blue Ribbon

    Theodore Roosevelt

     

    The views expressed on this blog are personal and belong to Joel Solliday unless otherwise stated. They are not, intended to characterize the views of the Lewiston Church of Christ or other organizations to which I may refer.

    0


    About the Author:

    Joel graduated from Pepperdine University with a B.A., completing two majors: Art and Religion. He went on to earn the Master of Divinity degree from Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California. The views expressed on this blog are personal and belong to Joel Solliday unless otherwise stated. They are not, intended to characterize the views of the Lewiston Church of Christ or other organizations to which I may refer.