Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Building on What is Already Wonderful

One of the important insights from the Gallup studies on engagement is that rather than dwelling on what is not working, in our parishes or in our own lives, we will do better to focus on what is already working wonderfully and build on it. I am amazed at how this seemingly small thought is changing my thinking and the way in which I look at my life, my parish, and my world.

Isn't it possible that the things that lead others to our parishes, the bright spots of life and love, the ways in which people care for each other and the needs of our world that often go unnoticed, are the very things that have potential for development and celebration?

The same is surely true of our personal lives, at home, in our parishes, in our community. When I really reflect on the talents God has given me, I realize there is so much I can do by developing and offering them, why focus on what I don't do well, on what I don't have?

There is much in our society that says "fix your weaknesses; resources are scarce; hold tight to what you have and you might be able to survive the moment." Christ says instead, "I have come that you might have life, life to the full."

Focusing and building on the many ways in which we are blessed, in our lives and in our parishes, is a much more sacred way to live. I begin this day with a prayer of gratitude, asking the Holy Spirit to guide my mind and heart so that I may recognize opportunities to build on what is already wonderful, to bring the beauty and strength of Christ's presence to those whom I encounter. What do you think?

1 comment:

John said...

You've reminded me of the power Stephen Covey's 7 Habits of Highly Effective People takes from presenting the first 3 habits as working on self. Habits 4-5-6 are then with others. #7 is about constant improvement.

John Gremer
St. John Neumann, Irvine, CA