“There is one enemy of our sacred chase that often remains undetected. It causes us to become impressed with ourselves and, though we’re slowly decaying, provides an appearance of life. Spiritual apathy wears it like a costume. We will call it proximity. . . . It does not require intentionality for it is based merely on convenience.”- Heath Adamson
In Chapter 2 (“Stained Glass and Starry Night”) of The Sacred Chase, Heath Adamson talks about one often undetected enemy of our sacred chase – proximity. Furthermore, aliases for proximity include nearness, religious performance, or lack of vulnerability. Hence, proximity acts as a shrewd enemy of our spiritual inheritance. In addition, writing in his book The Jesus Way, Eugene Peterson captures the essence of the term:
“Religion is one of the best covers for sin of almost all kinds. Pride, anger, lust, and greed are vermin that flourish under the floorboards of religion. Those of us who are identified with institutions or vocations in religion can’t be too vigilant. The devil does some of his best work behind stained glass.”
Enter the Sadducees, a sect within Judaism at the time of Christ. A priestly caste, they created a financial windfall with the help of the Romans and Herodians. Above all, this gouging of the devout centered around Herod’s Temple and the Tyre coin – a small, silver coin required for payment of the Temple tax. But, the priests controlled the price of that tax.
As a result, Heath wonders, do we, like the Sadducees, ever lose God in places where He should be found? For example- our thoughts, life decisions, or goals. Thus, Jesus took the greatest commandment from the Old Testament (Deuteronomy 6:5) and added the word mind (Mark 12:30). Consequently, Heath explains why:
“What we think and how we think about God changes everything. As we pursue a deeper connection with Jesus, who we understand him to be determines our response to him. The word repent can literally mean ‘to change the way you think.’ ”
Today’s question: How do you handle the one enemy of the sacred chase? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “Confuse proximity to Jesus with intimacy”