My 3 Lives
I think of myself as having 3 lives.
There is my “family life;” marriage to Carole, organizing and participating in the household, that kind of thing. Plus, I am a new grandfather, which totally delights me. I anticipate weekly stroller-walks with Jasper Patrick McLaren on the West Van seawall, coffee cup in hand (my hand).
There is my “professional life” or how I earn money. I work as a psychologist in private practice – that is how many of the subscribers to my blog know me. This is where I listen more than I talk. Plus, I am a professor at Carey Theological College in marriage and family studies where I talk more than I listen. I don’t think my students know that I listen (see previous blog entitled “Intentional Listening is Indistinguishable from Love”) but they do know that I like to be listened to.
And there is my “life life.” This is where I usually find myself — in my head and in my heart. I think of this introversion as my “rumblings,” my unsaid ideas, angsts and hopes. Not many know my “life life” and perhaps not many know yours. (I think of my university extroversion as “ramblings.”)
My “life life” is where my faith sits. It used to be that faith was propositional to me – do this and God will do that. My faith is more organic now. It morphs. Today’s faith is different than tomorrow’s faith.
It also sits. My faith doesn’t run after things as much anymore. Sometimes it walks but often it just sits around.
My faith wobbles at times, too. This seems to me the risk of anything organic. Sometimes something is dying and something else is coming along. I don’t try to convince myself of faith anymore, and I have no need of convincing you of it either. I do less ritualistic reassurances: less study, more wondering; less being a cleric, more being a citizen; less exclusion, more welcome; less leadership, more looking.
I still maintain my coffee and chocolate sacraments. And I do church (CapChurch) where you can find me most Sundays morphing, wondering, sitting and drinking coffee.
Update (December 2018): I now have 3 grandchildren, I no longer teach at the university / seminary, and I don’t usually go to church on a Sunday morning. But I did buy a small electric chainsaw and I cut branches into small pieces. And my faith is strong and more funny.