BY REV. CORY KEMP |
Working through the book How Will Your Measure Your Life? with a beloved client has given me some nuance to the usual things we say about paying attention as we live our lives.
We all know the right things to say, to think and to feel about living a good life, and, in the case of those reading this post, a faithful life. The Great Commandment of loving God, then the second that is like it, to love each other as we love ourselves, sums all of this up.
But in the daily living, the doing and the being, that is where the strategy and application of this book challenges us to decide what we want, how we choose to make that happen, and what it means to sacrifice for a greater good or another person, and deepen our commitment to those.
Although one of the authors is a person of religious faith, it is not a religious book. It is also not about turning the measuring instrument outward and using it to judge other people. The presenters share insights learned through their own lives and other people, but the focus is always on how they have applied those lessons learned in their own lives.
This is powerful stuff, none of it to be taken lightly, not unlike faith itself, what it means to measure one’s gifts against the opportunities that arise to serve using them.
I’ve felt this keenly the last few days, having learned of the passing of an old friend. Facebook is a great connecter, but it doesn’t offer death announcements. Perhaps that is a good thing. We find out in the way God has for us, and that is surely enough.
In their passing, I don’t have regrets, only sorrow for myself in enjoying their presence in my ongoing life.
What I’ve also learned again is the fullness of the completion of a life well-lived in these time-honored words: Well done, good and faithful servant.
This is also powerful stuff.
What comprises a well-lived life on anybody’s terms is both individual and collective. As people of faith, we are created for community. It has always been God’s pleasure to give us the kingdom, even as it is our good pleasure to serve in that kingdom, freely and without the burden of fear.
To know a few people who do this with the elegant grace, the dignified power and loving kindness that my friend did, that is the best example and encouragement for continuing on in my own way. Perhaps you know one or more people, living or already having moved into the more immediate presence of our Lord and Savior, who have given you this light too.
Willa Cather, through the title character of her book, My Antonia, said so beautifully, “Ain’t it wonderful how much people can mean to each other?”
Indeed, it is.
About the author
The Rev. Cory L. Kemp is founder and faith mentor with Broad Plains Faith Coaching. Cory, employing her signature Handcrafted Faith program, supports ordained and lay women leaders in visualizing, understanding and strengthening their beliefs, so that they may know, love and serve God and their communities with generosity, wisdom, and joy.
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