Living with an unhurried heart

There is not a moment goes by but that I am pondering the future, remembering the past or working hard on some project in the present. I know that it is the relationships in my life that are most important and have a lasting effect on my life and the life of the world. Despite this knowledge, by mind and my daily duties seem to have a life of their own, dragging me along on a ride in which I am less and less invested.

I find myself longing for the slower days of early summer, beyond the end of school chaos and the unending line of meetings and special activities that crowd the calendar after Easter. I want to be able to “waste” hours of time visiting with folks and learning more about their life and loves. I want to be able to greet a day that is not already fully scheduled, or becomes that way within a few minutes of my waking.

Sometimes I think of our parish as a place of business too, filled with activity and programs, committees and projects. God knows we need these things and in many very real and pressing ways, our common future depends upon them. But the core purpose of our being together as a church community is relational, communal. Nothing is more important than to live out lives of mutual love and concern, support and encouragement. Life is difficult, so we can use the company of fellow travelers who share our trust in God, our hope in Christ, the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

Last Sunday night was a startlingly beautiful evening, gentle breezes and wisps of cloud, slanting rays of the sun on green lawns. We had no evening adult class and no ball game, so a few of us settled in the chairs of the northwest courtyard after dinner and drank a glass of wine to the goodness of the day and shared our stories. It was a time a blessing, of the opening of hearts, of the binding together of spirits.

I pray that in the days to come that I will be able to more fully discern the things that need to be done from the things Christ is longing for me to do. May I learn to be with others more, and accomplish less. I pray, too, that you will look into your life and how you spent your time and seek the guidance of the Holy Spirit in becoming a greater part of the body of Christ at St. John’s. Make a point to be with us on Sunday, and lift your voices in worship. Hang around afterward and bend an ear, open your heart to listen, make plans for lunch or dinner with someone you don’t know well. Come out to a church league softball game and join in the friendly conversation and hearty banter.

Life is waiting for us to enter in fully, not with divided minds and hurried hearts, but with our whole self. June just seems like a good time to begin.

Lingering in the courtyard  – Fr. Dwight