Thursday, September 13, 2012

The Other Side the Promises

It's two months since I made perpetual profession. I've started to miss my blog weekly posts so, as promised, I'm starting to contribute occasional blogs to our monastery blogsite.

It has been quite a two months! The plan was that I would stay in my job in the development office for at least the first year after making profession. This was all neatly thought out to give a sense of continuity as I adjusted to being perpetually professed. That was the plan.

The reality? Eight weeks to the day after I professed, I found myself in a new role as Director of Communications. I'm both nervous and excited: nervous because I have a lot to learn, and excited because I like new challenges, and also because it's a job that demands doing a lot of things I enjoy (writing, for instance).

There's a particular challenge that I want to consider today: how starting a new job relates to my monastic life. I'm in a professional role that is very demanding and, despite occasional bouts of anxiety, I feel very energized by what I'm beginning. Put together, those two factors could mean that my job becomes all-consuming. I have to keep bringing myself back to the purpose of my call, the reason why I'm here. Meeting work deadlines and learning new skills can't become the center of my life, because the center has to remain God, and my primary activity has to be seeking God. I'm starting to understand how this relates to the promise of stability. Aspects of my life are changing, and they matter. But there is a stable core from which everything else stems, and remaining aware of that, keeping it nourished and flourishing is an even more significant job than being Director of Communications. After all, if I lose sight of my true goal, God, I won't have anything worthwhile to communicate.

Karen Rose, OSB

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