Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Reverb#7 Community

December 7 – Community. Where have you discovered community, online or otherwise, in 2010? What community would you like to join, create or more deeply connect with in 2011? (Author: Cali Harris)

Hands down, the community I discovered is the one over at Simplify 101, led by Aby Garvey and Jean Manis. The ladies there, leaders and participants alike, are exceptional in their acceptance of others and their care and concern. I have learned so much from all of them. Here's a bit of it.

1) I had no goals whatsoever. I set a few and actually saw some come to fruition.

a) planting and harvesting a vegetable garden

b) going to new and interesting places:

(Writing-On-Stone Provincial Park)

I also had the goal to write my Canadian Homeschooling curriculum this year and though I took steps towards that goal, it didn't work out.

2) I started developing habits that will allow me to keep my home and its clutter within my comfort zone. I wrote out what I should be doing as part of my morning, afternoon and evening routines. My attitude shifted enormously. I no longer resent that these things need to be done. Well, not all the time, anyway!

3) I developed a system for handling paper. Hooray for this one. This has been invaluable. No longer do stacks of paper have to sit there because I do not know what to do with them. I have a plan, a place and peace of mind.

4) More than anything, I feel able to move on. The house will or will not stay picked up, clutter-free and clean: that's up to me and what I choose to do at any given moment. But, whatever happens, I am done trying. Either I will do it, or I won't. No more gnashing of teeth, nor more wrestling with the emotional baggage (but my Mother never taught me to keep house), no more pondering my "issues." With the help of the wonderful folks at Simplify 101, I've done all that and it is done.

The future community?

Oh, I'd love to join a group of believers who, still, nonetheless, yet question. Andrew Sullivan expressed it best in his book, The Conservative Soul, I believe. I read it some time ago. It would have to be local, it would have to be inclusive and it would have to be Christian: yet, somehow, some way, also include both the Catholic and Protestant traditions. And it would also have to be open to what I am currently calling the practices of the Mystics about which I know nothing except they practiced something called Contemplative prayer. I don't know how to frame it--mostly because I haven't thought enough about it.

Another community I'd love to be a part of is one in which individuals are changing not only their bodies, through diet and exercise, but their minds, their thoughts and their beliefs about all that which seems to manifest itself in the body as well. I am reading A Course in Weight Loss by Marianne Williamson: I need a community of fellow readers to discuss and explore the weighty issues within the book. Perhaps. A small group dealing with an intense topic can be pulled apart by the extreme neediness of any one person--so, yeah, it could be kind of tricky to do. Emotions are such a big part of this (at least for me) that it is perhaps best not pursued as a group exercise without a qualified group therapist at the helm.

So, that leaves me without out a lot to go with at the moment: yet a lot to look for in the coming year.

"Community" is one candidate for my "One Little Word" this year, as is the phrase "reaching out." So we'll see.

1 comment :

Carmen Pauls Orthner said...

I did some searching after reading this post of yours, and you may be interested in connecting with the Urban Sanctuary group in Edmonton. I hope you find the community you are looking for -- from what I know of you, I think you have been looking for community for a long time. I will keep you in prayer that you find it, and that is more uplifting and enduring than the ex-FFF.


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