Being Christian means that all of our actions are drawn into the Christian realm. Everything we do affects the community of the body of Christ. Our sinfulness, our oversights, affect the entire body--that is part of the need for and meaning of reconciliation or penance. It is not only a private act between penitent and priest, but also a public act which seeks to redress and repair the breeches we have created in the body of Christ through our sinful actions. Our focus is often on ourselves, but the effect of grace is such as to touch both us and the body as a whole. As we are repaired and restored, so the body is healed. We cannot compartmentalize--we cannot separate out certain things and separate them from our Christian vocation.This is a topic that has much occupied me of late. For so long it was not thoroughly true of me that every waking moment was infused with an awareness of the reality of God, yet surely it is precisely such a state that the Christian ought to long for. Every turning away from Him is an opportunity for metanoia, a change of heart and a Sacramental turning-back.
Thanks to Steven for the effect he has on all of us through his blog and in other ways.