Everyday Spirituality

Everyday Spirituality


Look for Today’s New Success

posted by Cheryl Petersen

Sitting—thankfully on a cushioned chair—in the local rural Village Hall, my brain was lurching and lunging as I listened to the Village Trustees and Mayor hammer out the meeting agenda. The public meeting went on for almost 4 hours as dialogue and bantering droned. The only reason I was there was because I was called at the last minute with a request to write up a newspaper story about the meeting because the regular reporter had oral surgery that day. If it’d had been possible, I’d of chosen the oral surgery over the meeting. But it was another example of how we can expect new successes each day.

courtesy dannybrown.me

The room, like our world, was seething and swarming with opinions and emotions. A few hard comments were made but in general everyone kept their cool. I, on the other hand, was floundering to understand what they were talking about, issues they’ve been discussing for months. I had to make the effort not to let the subculture of human opinions and emotions assault the human spirit and rob me of my motivation to report on the real issues.

Decisions are being made every day and we want them to bring about success, otherwise they reflect the “my way or the highway” attitude. And, people will move out of a village or organization that is not being governed for the whole.

Leaders must offer a different definition of success in order to progress a society. We can recall Paul, offering new insight into success by first asking questions and then answering, “Is God the God of Jews only? Is he not the God of Gentiles also? Yes, of Gentiles also since God is one.” (Romans 3:29‑30, ESV)

The old success is to love our fellow friends and religious peers however that success dies and is replaced by the success of loving everyone. The new success, sadly, often first gets tromped on by human egotists and the power hungry. Howard Zinn, author of A People’s History of the United States, writes, “Anne Hutchinson was a religious woman, mother of thirteen children, and knowledgeable about healing with herbs. She defied the church fathers in the early years of the Massachusetts Bay Colony by insisting that she, and other ordinary people, could interpret the Bible for themselves.” Hutchinson was put on trial for heresy, treated despicably and eventually banished from the colony. However, looking back, it is Hutchinson’s stand that we honor today, while deploring the colonies position and decisions.

Success is new each day and we can discover it, even if at first it looks profane, offensive, or sacrilegious. Interestingly, at one point during the Village meeting, confusion blanketed a crucial decision about their drinking water. Finally, a far-out but simple suggestion from the public brought about first silence then a complete reversal in the decision. The confusion evaporated because the Trustees and Mayor could admit that the previous decision was only a repeat of a futile decision made months ago. We can have the courage to admit that yesterday’s success is not todays. God, Life is new each day and brings about new successes.

 



Previous Posts

Local hiking on the rise
The local Catskill Mountain Club (CMC) has given the community a couple of shots in the arm over the last year. Club members follow the proper channels, get approval from officials, and with GPS instruments in their hands, hack out trails for the public. The recent Delhi Trails is close to the Vi

posted 11:03:54am Sep. 02, 2014 | read full post »

A mask of compassion
In my observance of life, I’ve noticed a human trait that can get out of hand. We humor ourselves or others. I’m not talking about humor, hahaha. Wittiness and fun lay low when we want to humor someone. To humor someone is to indulge them, to give them slack, or comply with what they ar

posted 8:14:24am Aug. 27, 2014 | read full post »

Getting out of the rut
Moses lived a few hundred years after Joseph, the guy who saved the children of Israel from starvation by bringing them to Egypt. The move to the land of plenty was a glorious salvation. By time Moses was born, the children of Israel became lazy followers. They expected the leader, Pharaoh, to fe

posted 8:31:11am Aug. 24, 2014 | read full post »

Authentic baptism
Last week, I was asked by Chris to come watch his baptism. He decided he wanted to be baptized in the Susquehanna River. The day was lovely. The event was touching. Chris’ family was there and church friends. We all sang: Shall we gather at the river? By Robert Lowry, 1864 Shall we gather

posted 8:39:05am Aug. 21, 2014 | read full post »

Human intentions are secondary to the intentions of the Holy Spirit
Promises generally come with good intentions, however, neither the promise or the intentions have the power to fulfill themselves unless resolve, endurance, diligence, aplomb, grit, and common sense pulls through. Human promises are inert without the Holy Spirit. Promises fall out of our mouths a

posted 7:35:41am Aug. 17, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.