land of rest

Land of Rest is a blog of Peter Jenks. Poems, quotes and photos are by Peter Jenks (unless otherwise noted or I miss noting an older post's photo) and are copyrighted, you are free to use these if you acknowledge their source.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

The Challenge of Thinking Differently

     For over thirty years I have tried to find my place in the Episcopal Church. So often, though, I have been looking in the wrong places.  I have tried repeatedly to fit in and to contribute and be a part of the larger church, the diocese or groups beyond just the parish level. And yet it always seems to end up in disappointment.  If I run for an office, everyone else will be elected but me, it seems. If I volunteer for a committee, others are chosen. I oftentimes understand the reasons, and I would probably choose others as well. In any committee or search process there is a desire for diversity. I just happen to not be on any edge or represent any unique group. So I keep trying, and finding myself frustrated. On the other hand, life in the local setting in the parish or town I have found exceedingly great pleasure, relationships, and meaning. But part of me keeps thinking that what I need is to be found on a bigger stage.
     It is a challenge to shift my way of thinking. It is not easy to accept that which is closest to me, beneath my feet and beside me. Somehow I feel that there needs to be something else or some outside connection. This way of thinking is hard to break. Trying hard to break it, to change and to be different does not always work. Trying not to look at something only makes me more aware of what it is I am not looking at or avoiding. The challenge for me is to be surprised and focus on the simple and phenomenally brilliant treasure around me. It is why I love to read and write Haiku, because it focuses on the deep and present moment in front of us, something so simple and also so eternal.
Change does not seem to come to me by trying to change, but by finding something more interesting to draw my attention and energy towards. And it always seems to be present in some corner of my day.

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