As a pastor, I am faced with deadlines all of the time. I have to submit my bulletin information on Monday, prepare the rough draft of my sermon by Wednesday (if I want to practice for Sunday), prepare newsletter articles, and the list continues. I even find a little stress when writing my blog post each week. All of the sudden, I find that I robbed myself of the joy of some of the most fulfilling parts of my work. I am left with a sense of being a casualty to the demands of day to day living. Where can I find satisfaction in looking at everything as a chore?
When I find myself overwhelmed, I take a moment, and simply stop what I am doing. I remind myself that there is joy to be found in even the most ordinary and routine of duties. Preparing the bulletin for the next Sunday, allows me to begin the process of focusing on our next day of celebrating the resurrected Christ. I set my sights on the next project, the next time that I will stand before my congregation and lead my fellow believers in the liturgy of a Sunday morning. And this preparation includes writing, insights into the Biblical text, and how our narratives merge together with the sacred writings of an ancient people. Contentment is found in the process, the journey to another feast day.
What seems overwhelming is the reminder that there is a lot of work to be done before we celebrate another Sunday morning. Preparation becomes my companion, my guide, and not my enemy. It becomes my sacred time throughout the week. It just takes a change of perspective; a new way of looking at the journey. Praise be to God, who gives us the task of creating a weekly work of art for the human soul each and every week.
My hope for all of us this week is that we transcend our thought patterns, and serve with a spirit of hope. Let us leave the drudgery of completing tasks to another day. For this moment in time, let us remember that our preparation gives way to the presence of our amazing creator. I hope that we grasp on to the reality that God gives us ways to remain connected to the joy that sustains us, cares for us, and constantly recreates us each and every day.