Eventually I find that if I'm not careful, I start fixating on certain details. Don't get me wrong, details are all very important, and of course require attention. Not ALL of my attention, though; not even most of my attention.
For the last couple of weeks, I've been in a Papal Encyclical discussion group. We started with Pope Benedict XVI's most recent Encyclical letter, Caritas in Varitate, and have been really diving into it quite extensively. In it he writes:
Truth, in fact, is lógos which creates diá-logos, and hence communication and communion. Truth, by enabling men and women to let go of their subjective opinions and impressions, allows them to move beyond cultural and historical limitations and to come together in the assessment of the value and substance of things. Truth opens and unites our minds in the lógos of love: this is the Christian proclamation and testimony of charity. (Introduction, #4)
Subjective opinions and impressions. Cultural and historical limitations. Aren't these these very details that most often distract us from what we're here on this earth to do?
Of course in this Encyclical, Benedict XVI is directly addressing global and multi-national issues, but Truth applies universally, whether we're talking on a national or global scale about issues like the environment or health care, or evangelizing in our own communities or parishes. How often have we seen organizations or programs struggle to maintain participation, when new ideas and thoughts are squashed over the narrow-minded opinions and impressions of its members about a myriad of issues from proper pen color to personality types? or by an unhealthy attachment to unimportant cultural practices, or to those "glory days" of how we did things before?
When we allow ourselves to get caught up in all the wrong things, we fight Truth--we fight Christ Himself. If you are involved in ministry, spend some time in reflection, but not on the organization itself. Focus instead on Truth, which is Christ and His Church, and how that Truth can enlighten and enliven your ministry before even entering into a dialogue with others. This way, when we begin to act, we can be assured that we're acting in Christian love, not in some human agenda.