Patience and Energy

Today’s reflection comes from Office Manager Mariah Pepper:
I wrote down something that Jim Bechtold (incoming Moderator) said in his prayer at last week’s congregational meeting: “may we be as patient as we need to be, and as energetic as we can be” in this period of transition. I love the pairing of patience and energy. At first glance, they might seem contradictory. Patience is something you need while waiting, energy is what propels you forward. But patience absolutely takes energy; ask anyone who spends time around small children. And energy also requires patience – patience to learn and try again and again until your energy does what you want it to.
I’m a big gymnastics fan (stay with me, I promise this is relevant), and this past week I was riveted watching Chellsie Memmel come back to competition after being retired for 9 years (and having two children!). She’s one of the oldest American gymnasts to ever compete at a high level competition. And on the second day of the national championships, she made a mistake on an event, and instead of trying it again, she just ended her routine right there, saying “today isn’t my day.” That opened up a place in my heart in unexpected ways. If this determined, hard-working, incredible athlete can listen to herself and know that the best option is to stop, maybe I can do that too. Maybe instead of running headlong into something I know will be too much, I can stop and let myself not have it that day.
As we move into a period of re-opening transitions, both here at the church and in the rest of our lives, I hope that you take the time to recognize when you need to call it a day and try again tomorrow. I hope that you put energy into the patience you need, and that you can be patient with your energy as it re-learns how to be in the world.

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