I woke up Thursday morning to the sound of trash cans being dragged to the street; trash cans filled with ribbons, Christmas wrapping paper and all the remnants of our Christmas celebrations. The retail world will start slashing prices to reenergize post-Holiday spending, our favorite radio station will finally switch back to their normal playlist and yes, for many of us, it is back to work.
Today’s sermon title is “Working 9 to 5”. Our minds go immediately to that movie from the 80s with Jane Fonda, Lilly Tomlin, and Dolly Parton. Before we know it we will be humming that great Dolly Parton song “9 to 5, what a way to make a living” The movie and the song are familiar to us, but what you might not know is that the movie is based on a real group called 9to5. It is an organization formed by a group of women in Boston in 1976 to fight for the rights of working women. I love this quote from their website, “These women decided enough was enough. They felt feisty, empowered and fed up. They decided to fight for fair pay and equal treatment.” 9to5 today is one of the largest and most respected organizations of working women in the United States. It was true of those first founders of 9to5 and it is still true today, that while fighting the good fight, these women are still working 9to5. (Well, when you consider that more than 13 million men and women work two or more jobs just to make ends meet, 9 to 5 is more like 8 to 10pm or worse.)
Even the Christmas shepherds didn’t get a pass on earning a living. They did not leave the manger to become monks and contemplate all they have seen and heard. No, they went back to their sheep. While in some ways everything was the same; nothing was the same. They went back praising God and telling all those around them what had happened.
This weekend, we look at what it means to take our Christmas experience out into the 9 to 5 world. Are we leaving the manger scene feeling “feisty and empowered” and ready to make Christ’s love real in the “real” world?
Grace and Peace,