27 October 2010

Day 214: It's Good to be Alive

It's Good to Be Alive: Observations from a Wheelchair by Jack Rushton.  ISBN: 9781599554082.

Rushton manages to do quite a bit of preaching in his less than page long essays. I fear that sometimes my blog posts come off as a little preachy. I worry that this is unappealing to some readers, but I also think that speaking directly to an audience is often more effective and engaging than focusing just on myself. Part of it may also be a latent desire to be a minister.

When I was a teenager I was very involved in the Unitarian Universalist church. I went to youth conferences, I went to church every Sunday, we even held teen worship nights over at my house, and I was involved in church politics. We were not a very large group, there were maybe eight of us at our most active, but the church seemed to enjoy the status that comes with having a large and active (for UU) youth group, if not necessarily the hormones and spastic energy that came with it.

At one point the group decided we should give a sermon to the congregation. It was something along the lines of “We have all been teenagers at one point or another, it is a difficult time, so even though you may not understand all of our behavior, please show us compassion and understanding.” It was perhaps not the most inspirational or thought provoking sermon, but people seemed to enjoy it and we got a few laughs here and there on the funny parts.

The experience made me want to do it on a weekly basis. I enjoyed writing the oration, selecting the hymns and poetry, and pulling together several different thoughts into one coherent message. I would probably make a fairly good minister and be dedicated to my congregation, if it weren't for one problem.

I'm not a big people person.

It's not that I don't like people, because I do. I am just very selective about the people I want to be around and I get somewhat resentful when I have to spend more time than absolutely necessary with people I don't like. This is sometimes accelerated when you throw politics in the mix, and there are no politics quite like church politics. I guess I always thought people ought to behave a little better than normal when they're at church, even if it is a heathen Unitarian church. Instead it seems that because religion is such a personal thing people get even more bent out of shape if their personal agenda isn't carried through. I'm less interested in ministering to people's egos than I am to their minds and souls (however you define that).

I think I'll stick with my sometimes preachy blogging and hope that my flock at least finds my sermons interesting, even if they don't always agree with my politics.

My review can be found on Goodreads.

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