A friend of mine has often noted her frustration in finding the “right” church. She was turned off by churches that did not welcome all people, those that offered meaningless sermons, and those whose parishioners scrambled quickly to get out the door at the end of the service. She yearned for a minister who would deliver a meaningful sermon that she could apply throughout the week and she wanted a church that would teach her young son about a loving God.
Well, she finally found one that is a true fit. They attend weekly and both seem to be happy with the Church. Much to her pleasure, their church excludes no one, does not focus on the concept of sin, engages the congregation in healthy dialogue about every day issues, and the parishioners seem to care about one another.
One of the things I enjoy most about my friend is how much at home she is with herself. So much so, that she “says it like it is” occasionally using expletives as she tells a story. During a recent visit, she was talking about an annoying man on-line at Starbucks, “…he was such a Jackass.” she said. Her son, Tommy, looked up, and with a bit of a smirk (the kind a child has when he thinks he has “caught” his mom) commented “Mom, it doesn’t sound like Church is working yet!!”
“…doesn’t sound like church is working yet.”
I laughed out loud as Tommy was reminding his mom that she had said an inappropriate word and judged another person. Going to church meant following the teachings of the church, respecting others and their differences, and his mom wasn’t!!! Tommy was using the teachings of his church to provide a moral path for him and his mom.
While Tommy used the teachings of his new minister to provide a moral path, for others, it may not be the church. But we need something to guide us, perhaps a a conscience, value set, or goals we identified to be at our personal best. Sometimes our plan isn’t working….we are off track, out of alignment. If our back were out of alignment, we might see a chiropractor; if our eating was out of control we might seek a nutritionist. Whom do we seek if our behavior is out of alignment with the person we wish to be? Perhaps realigning our behavior is sometimes simple because we need only to look within ourselves, make an honest assessment and adjustment, and then follow the path that will keep us aligned.
Another friend shared with me her son’s gambling problem. As she described him, he was “out of control,” and frankly did not have it within his own power to realign. His family stepped in and presently he is in control again, albeit having lost his marriage and home. But most of our misalignment is not out of control, it is just a step off, a misstep into an old way of behaving.
High SUCCESSTROGEN women quickly identify when they have a misstep and get themselves back on track just as quickly, because they want to and because they can. Some of us wait too long to recognize the need to pull things back in order and some of us spin out of control. For me, the daily check at the end of each day about what I said, what I did, and what I didn’t say or do, helps me quickly identify an alignment problem, so that I can make sure “church is working” for me.
How do you keep yourself in alignment?