Saturday, August 24, 2013

Thoughts on Community

This weekend is little bit less active than the past few have been. Chris is working today (one of those few Saturdays that she gets scheduled to work) and I'm hoping that she can get an early shove.

I did manage a quick trip into the farmer's market in Springfield, a fill up on the del Sol (39.9 mpg) and a few errands. Now to spend some time finishing tomorrow's sermon notes.

It's been a little while since I've been to Charity Baptist is Springfield. I'm looking forward to being there again, although it does mean that I'll miss the concert at Hopedale tomorrow night.

This past week seems to have flown by. I guess that's a good thing. One of the things that I'm realizing is that I have a very small community of people in my life. I'm not sure that I can call the people that I work with a part of my community. Sure we are co-workers and serve a common purpose for a few hours each day, but I really have nothing else in common with them. They are not a vital part of my life (the job--well, the pay is) and I am not a vital part of their lives. I actually fell a greater "community" sense with a pastor that I just met than with the people I have worked with for years.

Is it that the shared ministry is more important to me than the shared mission of separating airplanes? Is there a greater sense of brotherhood with a fellow laborer in ministry than with other air traffic controllers? Although I get along with my co-workers, I can't say that I really look forward to seeing them everyday. For the most part, they are just a part of the job. That is not the case when it comes to ministry work.

Strangely enough, church life and work life share a lot of similarities. While I love my church and enjoy going there to worship and serve, in many ways the social atmosphere isn't very different from work. I'm not sure that I can call the people at church a part of my community. Other than sharing a few hours a week, I really have very little in common with most of them. They are not a vital part of my life and I am not a vital part of their lives.

I'm really not sure where this rant is going. I just started writing and this is what has turned up on the page. In rereading what I've written, one might get the idea that I feel lonely in ministry or am dissatisfied with work, church or life in general. Neither is really true. Perhaps it is just a realization that I know very little about the people that I come in contact with every day. Maybe I need to find a way to expand my "community" by being better about connecting with people outside of the areas that define our relationships. Maybe my life is too segregated--work is work, church is church, family is family, etc.

Is that what we've become as a society? Are we different pieces of different puzzles as we wander through the week and find ourselves in different places and different roles? Is it okay that I see you everyday and know nothing about you? Do I care if you you know anything about me? Have we become so narcissistic that other people just don't matter?

I'm going to have to think on this some more. Any thoughts...?

John <><

1 comment:

eViL pOp TaRt said...

John, the nature of time and obligations prevents us from knowing in-depth a large number of people. Still, the opportunity to smile at them and pass some pleasantry counts as being in a community.