One of my volunteer gigs is facilitating for a spirituality study group at my church. We meet on Wednesday mornings to read and discuss a book on a spiritual topic. After a summer break, we met for the first time this part week to begin reading Between the Dark and the Daylight by Joan Chittister.
The subtitle of the the book is Embracing the Contradictions of Life. We all feel that we need help with this!
Sister Joan begins by explaining that life is full of paradoxes and then illustrates the point through a series of relatively short chapters, with titles like “The Poverty of Plenty” and “The Sanity of Irrationality” and “The Certitude of Doubt”. Not that I have read the whole book yet. I like to keep a bit ahead of the group so that I am prepared to lead discussion, but I don’t like to be so far ahead that I am throwing in concepts from later chapters before we get to them.
It is a bit odd that I am facilitating the group because I am its junior member. OK – in most contexts I am not considered a “junior” but, at 54, I am the youngest. Many of the women – and we are all women, even though, theoretically, a man could choose to attend – have children in my age cohort.
I wound up doing it because the IHM sister who began the group decades ago needed to move on to some other duties and asked me to take it on. Do you know how difficult it is to say no to a sister when she asks you to do something for the parish? So I said yes, even though I didn’t feel qualified. Part of what makes it work is that I facilitate discussion rather than try to teach. The wisdom of the authors of the books we read plus the wisdom of the group carries us through.
This post is part of Linda’s Stream of Consciousness Saturdays. The prompt this week was “light.” Join us! Find out how here: http://lindaghill.com/2015/09/04/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-sept-515/