Yesterday at church, we had a congregational meeting that was part of a worship service. We used to have horrible congregational meetings before we started weaving them into worship services. You've probably experienced these kinds of meetings, if not in church then in some other setting: people who are vicious to each other in subtle ways, lots of undermining, lots of doubts, and perhaps some yelling.
When a congregational meeting is woven into a worship service, people have a tendency to behave in better ways. And it's good to remember why we're doing all of this in the first place. It's not about us, or it shouldn't be. It's about God and God's vision for us, which doesn't involve viciousness to each other.
Yesterday was our annual meeting too. Our pastor prepared a great slide show highlighting what we've done in the past year.
I tend to spend a lot of time thinking about all the things we don't get done. It's a trait in all aspects of my life. At work, I spend a lot of time thinking about what I wish we had done as a department. I always think of the places I wish I had gone, instead of remembering all the great places I've visited. I think about the time I didn't find for friendships, instead of giving myself credit for finding slips of time here and there. At church, especially since I've been on church Council, I agonize over all the work left to be done.
It was great to remember what we have accomplished: we've created a great new kind of worship service, we did VBS, we had a pumpkin patch, we fed varieties of hungry people, we raised money to fight malaria, we gave money to many other worthy projects, we sheltered the homeless, we created great holiday worship in addition to regular worship and our new service, on and on the list went.
I have learned a lesson from yesterday's service, although it was perhaps not the lesson my pastor intended. I need to spend some time thinking about what I have done, and less time beating myself up for what I haven't done. Perhaps I need to start keeping track, not just annually, but monthly or weekly.
Sometimes looking back through my blogs serves the same purpose. I'm amazed at what I manage to accomplish, even though I have a full-time job. And that realization spurs me to do more, unlike flagellating myself for all I didn't get done.
More praise, less castigating: a motto for 2013!
feeling the feelings…
9 months ago