When contemplating the quality of commitment, the first place I went was the dictionary where I noticed the abundance of references to the word in relation to prison, mental institutions and other forms of unpleasant sounding confinement. I laughed. No wonder it feels like such a heavy, burdensome word to me! In fact in looking at the definition of the word the only two synonyms I can get behind that demonstrate the possibility of the word on the upside to me are: pledge and promise.
When I ponder the word commitment right along side penal institutions and mental institutions, I also think about the institution of marriage. What a bad rap the bonds of holy matrimony have gotten because for some of us they might as well all be the same thing!
But I remember too the moment of high resolve I had when I stood in a church lo’ those many years ago taking the vows of matrimony and how I believed with all my heart in what I was doing on that day. So too I remember the day, many years later when I took my vows as a practitioner and reflected on how they were more sacred and meant more to me than my wedding vows because the pledge that I was taking that day was a much larger commitment. I was not committing myself to just one person, as a practitioner I was committing to revealing God through my service and my spiritual practice creating a vibrational ripple in the Universe uplifting and transforming all.
In the awareness of that commitment, the question for me when I look at this word now is what does commitment mean to me in relation to my ministry? What am I committed to as a Rev. on the path of ministry? And how do I feel about the idea of being committed to that?
The interesting thing is that I don’t exactly know what it is that I have said “Yes” to as a minister on the path because, well, I’m on the path. And as such I can only see where I am right now, know where I’ve been and perhaps, on a good day when the fog clears, maybe I can see a little farther ahead as to where I’m going. Most of the time though, I’m lucky if I can see where my next footstep should be and I pray that I don’t trip and fall on my keester along the way!
But what I do know is that I have said, “Yes” to a larger vision that is waiting to burst forth as my life. And because the vision is birthing itself through me, as me, I know I am uniquely qualified to mid-wife it.
So what am I committed to as I continue to hold the space for this faceless vision as my first ministry? I am committed to being honest and authentic. I am committed to deepening my spiritual practice through prayer, meditation and visioning. I am committed to holding the space of unconditional love wide open for whatever wishes to reveal itself as the work I must do as a minister.
This morning two of my fellow ministerial students and I all visioned together on the phone for ourselves and for each other and it gave me a chance to reflect on how valuable it is to be in that space of knowing without knowing. Knowing God has a Divine idea for each of our lives and that we already are uniquely qualified to step up and accept that job offer without having a clue what the benefits package is or even what the job title or the job itself might be.
I do walk in this space of being committed to that which is unknown and perhaps at this point in my journey is unknowable. This level of commitment allows me to deepen in faith and in trust knowing that no matter what I see in front of me on any given day that God has gone before me and made clear the path and that it is, indeed, leading me to exactly where it is that I need to go.