Saturday, May 22, 2010

Making Your Life Your Job

I really like the Down to Earth blog for several reasons. First, Rhonda is a bit older and clearly focused. Her life, at least what she portrays on-line, really is simple. So often I find on American posts about simplicity or living frugally is what a great deal someone got at Pottery Barn. I just can't relate. Not that I don't like great deals, and not that I don't like Pottery Barn, cause, I do, yessiree bob. It's just not where I'm living these days. Rhonda comes from a more genuine place, imho, and that is about creating a wholesome, enriched life where you are at with what you have. In other words, as I've said often enough before, with a nod to the now defunct Gentle Spirit magazine, "what do you have in your hand? "
I've been reading Crunchy Con this week and Dreher talks about sacramental living. Living as if actions, thoughts, visions, dreams, relationships have actions and meanings. As he defines; "In religious language, a sacrament is a physical thing- an object or an action- through which holiness is transmitted...Someone living by a sacramental vision would therefore treat someone with the same good manners even if it were somehow unpleasant, or if there were no social expectations to do do so. Being good is not something you do because it works; being good is something you do because it is the right thing to do, even if it costs you. At the risk of sounding pompously metaphysical, for people who adopt a sacramental way of being, everyday things, occurrences, and exchanges provide an opportunity to encounter ultimate reality- even, if you like, divinity."

Dreher's book goes on to address sacramental living by category: food, home, eduction, the environment, religion. Due to his book, and a couple of blogs that focus on simplicity and seasons I named something that has been bothering me on a fundamental level the last several weeks: the lack of beauty in my environment. Rhonda talks about "Making Your Life Your Job" in her latest post. In other words, creating, sacramentally, with God, with what you have in your hand, something beautiful of the day, the season, the situation. We are still in the piecemeal, transition point of re-grouping from the fire. Not home yet and knowing a move is immanent, we've held off on purchasing furniture or decorating at all. And there is still a garage of items to manage in one way or another, that still smell horrid. Beauty from ashes, literally, is what this year has been about for us, but currently, we are still walking on some ashes. Beauty? Not.

Visual beauty and community have been integral values for us for a long time and are clearly part of sacramental living. And God dropped a day full of both in my lap just because, reminding me that grace abounds, but is also found by intentionality. Yesterday, for example. I ran into a friend at the park a couple of weeks ago who is from Brazil. We started talking about food and agreed to get together so that she could teach me how to make beans and rice that are tasty (cause I can make them, but they are the "choke em down" variety). Yesterday we got together at the home of mutual friend and the day morphed into a a huge cook fest. We made over 25 meals, one of which was delivered to a friend who'd just had a baby, and the rest of which we divided. We laughed and talked and the kids played, played, played. It was a sweet day. Full of laughter and fellowship and meaning. Because we were making our life our job. Not only that, we cooked meals for 8 for less than $4 each. Booyah. And we decided that we would have to do this again. Regularly. Because we need the fellowship and we revel in the savings and we are living sacramentally in the doing. And it was good.


Redradtech said...

That is so wonderful. I am so guilty of not living like that. I used to, but stuff happens, as you know, and I got apathetic and just gave up on lots. I really need to get back to such a life. At work I am very sacrificial. At home, I just feel taken advantage of as no one feels like I do. God bless and I pray for the day God brings us together for a visit

Hen Jen said...

I love your words, how you described your thoughts and intentions.

and, your cooking interlude made me hungry, both for food and a work-along friendship. Wishing you more beauty this week...

LaughingLioness said...

thank-you both for the good wishes and prayers! =)