Thought For The Day 07/13/12


The Yearly Pilgrimage



Some keep the Sabbath going to Church, I keep it staying at Home – With a bobolink for a Chorister, And an Orchard, for a Dome.

Emily Dickinson


Think about the things that you do only once a year. Almost all of them are significant events that have long-term effects, for better or worse, on the quality of our lives. We visit our Optometrist, our Dentist and our Doctor  once a year. We value the health of our eyes, teeth and bodies and want to make sure that those who are trained to evaluate these things and to make recommendations as to our care of them, help us through all of the steps we need to implement as we strive to be our healthiest. We support the government programs that are vital for the safety and functioning of our country by our funding of them through our income taxes which we file every April 15th! We even celebrate important milestones but once every year including birthdays, anniversaries and special holidays. To celebrate them more often would somehow serve to diminish the importance of these special times, making them commonplace and less momentous. And many of us perform our duties once a year by attending Church during the Easter season or Synagogue on Yom Kippur. And then suddenly (or not so suddenly), other things become more important for the few waking hours we are blessed with every Saturday and Sunday. We find ourselves choosing family and fun time when we are not working, over God and faith and before we know it, another year has passed before we find ourselves entering the doors of God’s House once more. Now while quality time is vital to the health of the family dynamic, so is spiritual time necessary for the spiritual dynamic of the family.


I am not one who says that Church or Synagogue is an absolute must for every family every week. In fact, for many who work in the hospitality industry which is so vital to the economic health of my community, remembering the Sabbath and keeping it holy by attending services is a near impossibility. But not attending a place of worship is a far cry from not being a spiritual family where faith continues to play a prominent role. I shared a truism with you in my blog on  06/27/12, where I quoted something Dolly Parton, in the role of Truvy Jones, said in “Steel Magnolias”, “God don’t care which church you go to as long as you show up”. Today I am taking that Pearl of Wisdom one step further by amending it a tad; “God don’t care which church you go to just as long as you worship Him in your heart, even if the place you are doing that is in your own home”!


God centered worship is not restricted to where you are….only THAT YOU ARE! Sharing communal time within the family to pray, whether it is before joining to break bread or sitting together after a long and hectic day, in the comfort of your living room, helps to prevent the ongoing fragmentation of the family dynamic that has become so prevalent these days. And while it may not seem significant on the surface, just try to imagine what the cumulative effect of these shared times means over the course of a decade in the life of a young person. I have said it before and I must say it again. We are the best teachers our children will ever have. And if they observe us being kind to each other, they will model the same behavior as they grow. If they bear witness to joyful praise and become one with shared traditions within the family, such as prayer, they are likely to continue this as they grow and have families of their own. Children who know and love God don’t just happen….they are created and they are not created in a church or temple but in a home!


“So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.”

James 2:17-18 ESV


Copyright © 2011-2012 “MandysPath” Ministry


About Mandy Bruscella

Mandy's Story: As a Registered Professional Nurse with Certification in a number of specialties including home care, I was afforded the opportunity of working closely with various Social Service Agencies in NY and NJ. ~ A lifelong Christian, I was ordained as a Presbyterian deacon in 1993 and, after relocating to SC in 2000, elected to become ordained as a non-denominational minister. ~ I established "MandysPath" Ministry in 2011. "MandysPath" Ministry is a member of Pacific Life Church, El Sobrante, CA, network of ministries. ~ I direct an outreach ministry in an alternative setting, providing spiritual care to a congregation of more than 500 people from around the world via the Internet. ~ As part of this outreach, I write a daily faith based blog. In March, 2012 I was asked to become a board member of Heroes For Children which is a non-profit foundation, established to assists the Guardian ad Litem program of Horry County, SC. Guardians ad Litem are a group of court appointed advocates who represent the best interests of children in Family Court proceedings involving allegations of abuse or neglect. Working closely with these men and women who make a difference in the lives of children, I completed training and have been sworn in to serve as a Guardian ad Litem for the state of South Carolina . ~ I have been married since 1975 to a wonderful man, Daniel. I have a son Daniel and his wife Melissa who live in NYC. My daughter Sabrina and my grandson Landon live here in SC. ~ My father Harold continues to share his wisdom with me and is responsible for many of the ideas I write about!

2 responses »

  1. Amanda,

    Thank you so much for your words – I aways enjoy reading them, but today especially! This is lovely and very meaningful to me … with my work schedule, I don’t often get to church, I buy missed sermons and listen to them over and over and I actually have an alter in my home. First thing in the morning, I replenish a vessel of water that sits directly below a simple cross – so that my Lord may never symbolically thirst for anything – least of all, my attention. I come last thing at night and many times in between for wisdom, protection – help for so many things and most importantly to praise my Maker.

    I have always believed that I can worship God where ever – I actually think that is what Jesus came to say to the pharisees – there didn’t need to be an intermediary or even a temple other than a heart truly and profoundly in love with Him and wanting to follow His lead in this broken world … in the woods, within a conversation, even on facebook … but, I have often thought that there would be those of faith looking down on my lack of discipline and think of me as one not committed to honoring God and I rejoice and rejoice hardily to be given public blessings by a dear and trusted soul – you!

    I’ve always believed in the expression – do your best, and when you can do better – do better and I definitely look forward to the day when an entire sabbath day can be spent in worship, not for an hour between doing laundry and taking a nap. Until that time though, I would like to believe that He is pleased to be the center of my life whereever it may be … thank you again Amanda and God bless you and all those in your world – always.

    Alisa Christopher

    p.s. I changed my name after the loss of my family many, many years ago … Christopher means, as I understand, to be a bearer of Chirst … it seemed totally appropriate that I should have this as a surname and I am reminded of His love for me and all of His family every time I even introduce myself … this is my joy and my honor.


    • I am sorry I did not write back a response to your lovely comment. I agree with you about doing better if you can which is why I have adopted the following as my mantra: “Promise only what you can deliver. Then deliver more than you promise.” I look forward to talking again!


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