It’s a very busy weekend in my house; a wedding rehearsal, a very large funeral, a wedding and a birthday party, not to mention two reports I need to write for my part-time job. I also have a friend who is seriously ill one hour away. It’s a good thing I am on vacation! I am attempting to stay calm, remain focused on the most important things and be in the moment when I am leading or hosting a gathering. As a highly organized person I have a habit of looking ahead. That can be helpful to planning, even creativity, but it can shortchange the event that presents itself right now, in the present. I do everything I can to push back against that, to put things away that physically remind me of what is coming. I look people in the eyes, try to feel the moment, I try to get a sense of what is going on here and now.
This has been my growing edge these last few years, to enter into the energy and feeling of the moment and not just plan for it creatively, practically and analytically. I have always been good at bringing all of the pieces of preparation to the event, thinking, praying, organizing, and physically gathering everything and assembling it all for the moment. But I knew something was missing. I sometimes missed what was happening now, right in front of me, the ground had shifted since the original plans and now I needed to adapt.
When presented with a last minute change I am quite good at rolling with it. That is once my anger at the one whose procrastination has caused this change has waned. But then I put my creative, analytical and organizational hat on and go back at it. But when the feelings have changed, when the energy in the room has changed, that is something I do not tend to notice or adapt to. But recently I am doing both. I worked with a colleague for a short time who was as good at these things as I have ever seen. I watched how he did this and the openness he showed to making something new come about. He did not tend to do much organizational work, indeed he left that to others. But he took great care to assess the feelings and energy in the room and address both in creative and meaningful ways.
I find when I get a lot on my plate now I need to remember those lessons, to allow myself to feel the energy, to connect to the emotions in the room and not just charge into the plans. I am saved by the fact that my plans are organic, I take a lot of time to listen and consider how others feel and what they want. My plans are often very good and well supported. But they sometimes lack the touch of the immediate feelings and energy of the moment when it arrives. I have learned that life in general and church gathering in particular need this spontaneous awareness and response to truly honour the moment as the Holy Spirit would wish.
I encourage anyone reading this blog to be aware of how they meet the moments that come upon them; do you bring your most creative self, are you organized, have you listened to those who are participating with you, are thinking of the big picture and connecting to the larger issues at play, are you making sure all the pieces are there ready to be utilized and finally, are you aware and respectful of the feelings and energy happening under your feet, in the air we breathe, that we are holding in our bodies? When things get stressful and full taking account of these matters can make all the difference, to you and to others.