Skip to main content

quiet vs. not so quiet



Taken in December 16, 2006, this is the main street of the little town of Saint Lazare where I live. Pretty quiet for a Saturday night. I am leaving for San Fancisco tomorrow morning to visit a friend for 5 days and I am looking forward to the change not only from cold weather, but from quietness. Dean just returned from 8 days in Los Angeles on a business trip so it has been extra quiet here this past week, though very productive and enlightening and important on my part. I am a contemplative person and do much of my learning and growing by thinking things through and listening to God and reading and writing and creating, but there is also this side of me that needs crowds of people and lots of hustle and activity and a certain wild spontaneity in order to learn and see and experience those things that just cannot be learned in solitude. I also highly regard one-on-one relationships, and would sacrifice just about anything else in order to spend some quality time with someone whom I consider dear to me. That is one of the reasons I am going to visit my friend, Lucy: because she is important and interesting and it is worth some time and money and effort on my part to let her know that. To paraphrase Solomon: there is a time for everything, a time to listen in quietness, a time to party and celebrate and not hold back, and a time to focus on those people that are important in your life. May I learn to be in tune with God's timing.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

what binds us together?

For the past few weeks, I have been reading a book by famed psychiatrist M. Scott Peck which chronicles his travels (together with his wife) through remote parts of the UK in search of prehistoric stones. The book is part travel journal, part spiritual musings, part psychology, and part personal anecdotes. A mixed bag, to be sure, and not always a winning combination. At one point, I considered putting the book aside, not finishing it, but then Peck started writing about community. He is no stranger to the concept. He has led hundreds of community-building workshops over the years, helped start a non-profit organisation dedicated to fostering community, and written a compelling book about the topic, one which greatly impacted me when I read it oh so long ago.[1]

In preparation for a course I am teaching next year, I have been doing quite a bit of study on unity and community. Once you start thinking about it, you see and hear evidence of it everywhere. (See my blog on the impact of b…

job hunting

I am on the hunt for a job. PhD in hand, I am a theologian for hire. The thing is, not a lot of places are hiring theologians these days, and if they are, they are usually looking for scholars with skills and experience outside my area of expertise. Today I found job opportunities for those knowledgeable in Religion, Race, and Colonialism, Philosophy and History of Religion, Islam and Society, Languages of Late Antiquity, Religion, Ethics, and Politics, and an ad for a Molecular Genetic Pathologist. Not one posting for a Dramatic Theologian with  a side order of Spirituality and a dash of Methodology.

I know, I know. My expectations are a bit unrealistic if I believe I will find an exact match for my particular skills. I know that job descriptions are wish lists to some extent, so no candidate is ever a perfect match. I also realize that one must adapt one's skill set according to the requirements of the job and be flexible. But there are so few jobs which come within ten or even…

building the church

Imagine two scenarios: 1) Give every person in the room a popsicle stick. Ask them to come together and put their sticks onto a table. Invariably, you end up with a random pile of sticks on a table. 2) Give every person in the room a popsicle stick. Show a picture of a popsicle stick bird feeder and ask people to come together and put their sticks on a table according to the picture. You will end up with the beginnings of a bird feeder on a table.

What is the difference between the two scenarios? In both, each person brought what they had and contributed it to the collective. However, in the first scenario, there were no guidelines, no plan, and no right or wrong way to pile the sticks. People came, placed their sticks on the table, and walked away. In the second scenario, people were given a plan to follow and as a result, something specific was built. Instead of walking away after they made their contribution, people huddled around the table to watch what was being built. Some were…