Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Pay Attention

   It was a simple act. The woman pulling off of busy Manchester Expressway looked into the parking lot of Dunkin' Donuts before she entered. I was in the parking lot, still some distance away, but the simple act of paying attention caught mine. 
   The earth is spinning around its axis at 1,041 mph, the same as always. But most of us have the feeling that our little worlds seem to be spinning faster and faster. Information is coming more quickly and opportunities to 'do things' seem to be on the increase. Life rarely slows down. Even trying to slow things down takes some work. So we all take note of the people around us who seem to be able to slow things down and pay attention a little better. I thought I would take that nameless driver's lead and pay attention to what is around me:
  • Jack Osteen is faithful at delivering the remaining flowers from worship each week to persons in need of a little boost in the hospital, nursing home or at their home.
  • Martha Conklin arrives quietly each week, almost never missing, and cares for the most precious ones at Epworth each week in the nursery.
  • Fred Scanling is not in worship with us very often, but has an important ministry of paying attention to what we post online and in our bulletins and helping us catch errors. 
  • Janie Nellums pays attention to the preacher's typos, comma mistakes, and never misses anyof them. See what I did there!
  • Jan Shackleford sends hand-written cards to people in need us a word of encouragement with no fanfare or special praise.
  • Ella Kate Conkle is on the lookout for me every week to run and give me a hug. Even on the weeks my sermons go too long. 
  • Jeannie Guilbeault walks the halls of Epworth every week during Sunday School to look in windows and around corners to make sure kids and youth are safe and cared for.
   My friend from the Pastoral Institute, Stephen Muse, wrote recently, "Belovedness is essential nourishment to the human soul and this remains true our whole lives. When it is missing, violence emerges, both with the mind and body, in the form of various diseases and higher mortality rates as well as with betrayal and addiction within our families and communities." (find his book here). He was talking about the critical role parents plan in raising children. I think he is saying we must pay attention to children and then pour on them our love. Attention is important to keep them from harm right now, but love is critical for them to grow up well later on.
   I think the same is true for adults. Paying attention and showering others with love helps us grow well later on. Grace and Peace, Scott

No comments:

Post a Comment