The To Do List
I remember a sign my mother kept on her dresser. It said, “If you have built your castles in the air you work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.” That’s a Henry David Thoreau quotation. The same sign sits in my office on my altar. What I see is that we tend to do one or the other. We dream-weave about what we’d like to see happen (or if we are serious spiritual people, we call it visioning) or we race around and “do” until we’ve pounded our foundation into the ground. Often we pound a few of our loved ones into the ground right along with it.
I spent the weekend working with a Center that is about to be “between ministers”. The current senior minister is retiring at the end of the month and the assistant minister will be stepping up. That means the rest of the leadership will also be stepping up, and many of the congregants will need to step into greater ownership of their Center. I’m excited for all of them! We spent some time looking at the consciousness of the Center, then got clear on what was theirs to do and what should be left to God and finally put definite goals in place that reflect only the human “to-do” list.
How many times have I forgotten to split up the chores list before I started? Well, that skipped step defined my college years, from my very first class right through two masters’ degrees. It wasn’t really my job to make sure the right teachers were hired, but I worried about it. It wasn’t even mine to worry about the money – I showed up, earned as much as I could and the rest just showed up on its own. Of course, I had to fill out some forms, but there’s another example of knowing what’s on my list to do and what’s not. My job was to study, mostly, and to support myself as I did that. My job was to do the assignments and not skip class. My job was to trust that Spirit had my back, had filled Fort Knox and therefore could pay my tuition somehow.
These days, my job is to show up to facilitate the work being done in each person’s consciousness. I teach the tools. I show folks where to plug into the Source of these Power Tools, metaphorically speaking. It really is none of my business what they do with the tools after that, although I will admit to loving the chance to watch folks play and succeed and build magnificent lives. I teach and then cheer. I pray. Everything else is on Spirit’s list.