Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Getting Moved...

Yeah, yesterday was moving day for many of us here at Saint Meinrad. The long awaited renovation of St. Gregory Hall is entering its very final stages (it will be officially dedicated in a couple of weeks), and its complete enough that the seminarians occupying the space are moving this week.

GEESH! I thought I'd slimmed down my life before coming to seminary. There's nothing like a move to help you realize all the stuff you have - and how much of it you really just don't need. I didn't make any "keep or toss" decisions over this move, but I can clearly see how much I need to do another round of that.

More and more over the last year or so, I've been made aware of my attachments. Sure - like most everybody in the western world, I notice that I've got overattachment to "things". But I'm also able to see some real progress in my life on this score. I'm not nearly attached to things as I used to be - certainly not attached to having many things, the specific things, the cool things. I'm growing to be appreciative more and more of a calling in life that stops using things to keep score. I like having fewer things.

But, this move has made me aware of another kind of attachment that I struggle with that's a lot easier to overlook. I'm attached to my "nest". (I'm sure there's a better word for it, but for the life of me I can't think of one.) It seems as if it doesn't really matter to me how much or how little space I have that is a space for me... I'm less and less concerned (though I have a long way to go, believe me) with what I have to put in that space. But, I like it when I have that space, I'm in that space, what "things" I have are in a home that works for me in that space, and I'm nice and settled.

Even the idea of that space being in transition freaks me out a little bit. I've had a growing frustration over the last three weeks that really seemed to mostly vanish once I'd got the move over with - and really more than that, once I'd got settled in. In a matter of just half a day of moving, my emotional stress level was cut in half, and this morning when I woke up from sleeping in the room, probably half again. Amazing!

It's great to get this little tidbit of self-awareness, it may help me to be more proactive in move situations in the future. But there's more to it than that. More to learn to let go of. More to be ready to surrender. Diocesan priesthood in the United States today will not likely require me to be without any space in which to live and "nest". Diocesan priesthood in the United States today will not likely require me to move every couple of months even.

But - that doesn't mean that I don't need to look at this attachment, and try to become able to let go of it. We're all called to live a life where our heart is not attached to certain things, places, spaces - or even having a stable space. We're called to live a life that's attached to a cross. The closer I get to that, the more I understand its not just about sacrifice, though that's certainly there. It's also beautiful, and free, and a gift in and of itself.

Anyway...that's what's happening in my world today.

1 comment:

jsignal said...

As a 1st year seminarian, I've also noticed (though I have a long, long way to go) increasing detachment. It surprised me how little I cared, for example, when someone backed into my relatively new pickup, destroying the bumper. It amazed me that I just didn't care.

But when I look around my own "next" here at Kenrick in Saint Louis, I see a lot of unnecessary gadgets (like 2 computers, for example).

I enjoy reading your blog every now and then. Thank you for sharing.

-Jason