5/20/2008

Our Own Little Worlds

Right now is a very busy, interesting, potentially stressful time in the life of my family. Along with the constant day-to-day requirements of work, providing and accountability to bosses, friends and each other, all of us have something big and consuming we are dealing with. It may be temporary and it may be a positive thing but whatever category it falls under it has the potential to preoccupy and take most of our focus. My wife’s mother is seriously ill and in need of constant care. My daughter is graduating from college this week and planning on moving to Italy for a year in the fall. My oldest son and his girlfriend are engulfed in wedding plans for her sister as well as juggling work, school and ministry. My youngest son is preparing for finals in high school and becoming a senior and all it involves. I am maneuvering through some unexpectedly treacherous waters on the career front. My parents are planning their 50th wedding anniversary later this summer. My brother is preparing to move to another state in June to settle down and start a career. My sister is in the middle of the failing health of in-laws as well as her first born preparing to graduate high school and go off to college. There is a lot going on (not even bringing up earthquakes and other natural disasters all over the world) and, surprisingly, it is easy to lose sight of that. At least where it concerns everybody else.

What I worry about on a personal level is getting so wrapped up in my situation that I forget that other folks in my circle are dealing with their own circumstances. Or worse, I expect others to be as consumed with my issues as I am, regardless of what they may be dealing with. Both scenarios can play out and breed resentment and pouting. (I assume this would be one of the definitions of “selfish” but that puts such a harsh spin on it that I would rather not try and label it.) We are so wired to be self serving that, sadly, it takes effort to be concerned about someone else. And when we do make the effort it isn’t always repaid. Should that matter? Does it make it any less “right” if others are not “playing along?” Before you answer, remember that thinking of others is a command straight from the mouth of Jesus. This is how our pastor succinctly describes the Christ centered life: Love God. Love folks. Those are the essentials. At times like these—and aren’t they always “times like these”?—it is good to be reminded.

1 comment:

krista said...

And your sister had a breakdown at the scrapbook store yesterday as she worked to finish the pages of her senior's scrapbook. The end draweth nigh.....so yes, I feel the pain of everyone right now and it makes my eyes trickle.