From the Pastor’s Pen – Perspective

I had a change of perspective last week. It might not be life-changing or foundation-shaking, but it was a shift, at least for a little while.

I have routines I like to follow. They make me comfortable. It disturbs and aggravates me when they are upset.

Of course, I should offer a disclaimer when I say that. Ministry, to a great degree, is a series of interruptions and upsets, and I accept and embrace that quality of my vocation. People will get sick and need visiting and they’ll stop by my office and call me at odd hours and need intervention and all sorts of things like that. Those don’t bug me. The aggravating interruptions are the ones that are unrelated to the work of ministry, broad as it is.

So maybe my sense of routine is a bit vague, but there is enough predictability in what I do that I could define some sort of boundaries.

Sometimes, though, what I need is a reminder that the ministry is bigger than what I welcome into my routine. Sometimes I need something to throw my perspective into a broader focus.

Last Tuesday, a friend who collects frequent flyer miles gifted me with a round trip to preside over a funeral in Pennsylvania of another good friend’s mother. The view out the window of the first flight was enough to jolt me out of my routine expectations.

The view out the window of the first flight was enough to jolt me out of my routine expectations.

I hope you have occasional moments like that, when something jolts you into a wider awareness of creation, maybe of the cosmos, maybe of the nature of the Divine. Maybe it doesn’t need to be as spectacular as soaring tens of thousands of feet above the ground. Maybe the slow glide of a snail on a leaf could do the trick. Maybe just a word spoken in gentleness and grace. Maybe just an overwhelming sense of peace that comes from nowhere.

I hope something jolts you out of your reverie this week and makes you thankful for the astounding beauty of God’s creation, makes you remember that God’s imagination is a whole lot bigger than our routines.