I find a recurring battle going on in my spirit right now. While I am pretty sure of the way through it, the battle isn’t any less intense. The feelings are raw and real for me.
I spent 30 years in ministry. While I still feel “called” in ministry, I have entered a new ministry space and, quite candidly, it is a very crowded space where I have no room to contribute something significant. I am an afterthought in this particular context.
There is a reason for it, and I fully understand it. My issue is that I am still wrestling with my ego and pride. The reason I am struggling is this: I am not to fill a role of “significance” in that space. There isn’t room and I need to actually embrace it.
The place of deep satisfaction is that I do less in that space/role. I hand off more and stay quiet. I will find other areas of growth and use, but the traditional ministry space I have loved is not where it’s at anymore in my life.
Enter Arthur Brooks and a timely reminder. He has written somewhat extensively in the past few years on what it means to find deep satisfaction and the conclusion is this: find happiness in LESS. Not just less stuff. Less everything. Give away more.
This is the essence of my challenge:
As we grow older in the West, we generally think we should have a lot to show for our lives—a lot of trophies. According to numerous Eastern philosophies, this is backwards. As we age, we shouldn’t accumulate more to represent ourselves, but rather strip things away to find our true selves—and thus, to find happiness and peace.
Brooks has some very important steps in what he has found to be some keys to deep satisfaction. I am in need of this reminder at this point in my life.