My shoulders hurt. And now that I think of it, so does my neck.
It’s one of the things I’ve been meaning to do since I moved cross country. Find a chiropractor. But somehow, that task has slipped so far off my list I think it might be buried in the early spring mud.
If you work in the church these days, you know that the institution is in the middle of profound change. You see signs of it everywhere: declining membership, church closings, budget crunches. And then there are the moral crises: the Catholic hierarchy’s inability to address its broad culture of abuse and complicity. Just for one example. But that’s just one. The church I serve now has Methodist ties, so when a global body met in St. Louis three weeks ago to strengthen its harmful policies toward LGBTQ laity and clergy, my congregation shuddered. The vote was complicated (how many modern-day denominations can hold together a global communion?), but I found the message it sent depressing and painful.
All of these ruptures are a long time coming. It’s clear to me that the Spirit has led the church into a wilderness, and we need our time in the desert. Bring on the exfoliation, the enema, the repentance. But is it any wonder that for those who lead, church work feels especially precarious and sometimes heavy? Hence, my shoulders hurt.
One of my wise colleagues recently used the phrase “loving detachment” to describe a balance she was seeking in her relationships. It’s a wonderful paradox. Loving detachment. Detachment applied with love. I think it’s a wise path for anybody. Stay connected, but without trying to control. Stay separate, yet open. Detach the brain, with its endless looping anxieties and keep returning to the heart, the center of the chest and of life itself.
As soon as I finish writing this, I’m going to find a chiropractor. This pain is unnecessary. But then, how much of our pain is unnecessary…and self-inflicted?
How can you love what you love today, but with more detachment?
Grateful for you,