Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Becoming playful, creative and restful in community...

This is a week of catch up before my closing two weeks of vacation: last
night we had a sabbatical team meeting, today a few local social justice Berkshire Organizing Project meetings, tomorrow some follow-up on both CROP Walk plans and an emerging ecumenical shared Christian Formation plan for youth and Friday a wedding. Then it is on to Montreal - with a quick stop over in the Eastern Townships for a book signing for Louise Penny - and then a few days of fun and apartment hunting for next year's sabbatical.

Before bed last night, I read these words of wisdom from Parker Palmer in his A Hidden Wholeness:

The divided life is a wounded life and the soul keeps calling us to heal the wound. Ignore the call, and we find ourselves trying to numb our pain with an anesthetic of choice, be it substance abuse, overwork, consumerism or mindless media noise. Such anesthetics are easy to come by in a society that wants to keep us divided AND unaware of our pain - for the divided life that is pathological for individuals can serve social systems well, especially when it comes to those functions that are morally dubious.

In preparing for "our" sabbatical - and that is what the grantee reminds us is at the core of our proposal - both pastor and congregation are invited to find new/old ways of being playful, creative and restful. I know that I need this and trust that the congregation does, too - especially given our shared penchant for doing, doing, doing. Palmer's book reminds us "that because we are communal creatures who need each other's support - and because left to our own devices, we have an endless capacity for self-absorption and self-deception - community is essential for rejoining soul and role." So, as hard as it is for some of us, myself included, to practice being playful, creative and restful that's where we are headed.


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