How often, when you meet someone new, do you ask: “What do you do?” How often does someone ask you: “What do you do?”
Do you have an answer? Do you tell them your title? Your job? Where you work? Or do you have a different answer?
When I answer by telling people that I’m a hospice chaplain, the most common responses are: “I don’t know how you can do that every day” or “You must be a saint.”
My friends or I can assure them – I am far from a saint. I can be sarcastic. The trunk of my car is a mess. I haven’t returned my Tab cans to the supermarket. I’m behind in my letter writing. There are piles of books all over the house (although I think I cleared up all my overdue library books today.) It’s after dark, so it’s already the second day of Elul and I’m blogging for the first day. And I do my job because it makes my soul sing.
Maybe I should change my response.
What do I do?
- I get out of bed everyday. (Which, given the state of the world today, given the personal issues each of us confront, given our challenges, and our pain, may be one of the most important things that any of us do.)
- I knit. It’s my form of meditation. It’s both mindful and mind-freeing.
- I do art projects and challenges. (My 100Day challenge postings are not up-to-date but they will be by the end of the weekend.)
- I drive. Way too much. But I listen to books on tape, podcasts, music, and interesting speakers and topics on the radio. (Of course, every time I listen to “On Being,” I seem to miss my exit. Perhaps spirituality does not belong in the car.)
- I get together with friends and family.
- I spend time with my granddaughter. She can smile and laugh. That’s what she does, and it’s pretty spectacular.
What do you do?