A Break of Sorts for Common Ground
By: John Parsons
As summer approaches and our local schools are gearing up for vacation, Common Ground also steps back for a couple of months. Most of the families we assist and the programs we support are contacted directly through the schools. For teachers and students it’s a time to rest, relax and rejuvenate. For Common Ground volunteers it can involve more. Our founders had the idea of a collaborative effort to build healthy communities - this includes physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health. A tall order by any measure.
We are a group defined by our action. Our volunteers are people of action. We see a need and move in to assist. While we may take a break, hunger and the other effects of poverty do not. So what can we do during the long summer break, where taking action is set aside for other methods? How about thinking . . . with your heart? Contemplation is one way to center ourselves and connect with our own spiritual journey. Fr. Richard Rohr, a globally recognized ecumenical teacher, states, ”Simply put, contemplation is entering a deeper silence and letting go of our habitual thoughts, sensations, and feelings. This can also be called meditation or even prayer.”
We need both action and contemplation to have a whole spiritual journey. It doesn't matter which comes first; action may lead you to contemplation and contemplation may lead you to action. Maybe a break from action and a time of contemplation will bring us back to a renewed and energized action.