These past two weeks I’ve had an unusually high amount of conversations with CMC folks who are overwhelmed with their jobs. Overly busy, swamped, worn down, exhausted, exasperated. I started noticing a pattern last week, then it kept coming. This is likely not an unusual condition. It’s just unusual for it to dominate the content of so many of my own interactions with CMC folks.
So I’m highlighting it here. Since we are Practicing Awareness during Lent, I’m passing along what has come to my awareness. In case you thought you were the only one. Or in case you thought it was mostly your problem rather than a persistent and rampant systemic reality. As you well know, it most definitely is your problem. It is most definitely our problem, collectively, as a society.
Sometimes it’s just a busy season, with relief in sight. Sometimes there are do-able steps one can take to delegate responsibilities, say No more often, shed tasks down to what is most important. And sometimes it’s time to get the hell out while you’re still alive.
One of the things I most appreciate about Lent is the constant reminder of our mortality. We begin with the words of Ash Wednesday: “Remember you are dust, and to dust you will return.” We end with the cross, witnessing the death of Jesus who said, “Pick up your cross and follow me.”
A contemplative awareness of death does wonders to bring life into focus. What and who is most important? How can I be of service to humanity and not a slave to the man? How can I provide for myself and those I love with time for what brings me joy? What am I to do with this miraculous dust of my body while I still have breath?
I continue to believe that Sabbath is one of the most radical forms of resistance in our time. A day when non-market values rule the day, and life is lived for its own sake.
How are you doing with all that?!