Saturday, July 30, 2011

Pondering the Ability to Adjust

One of the gifts that the LORD has blessed me with is the ability to adjust well. It doesn't always happen immediately...sometimes it takes awhile, but I have come to count on this ability as I cope with my often changing world.

A good example is adjusting to  living in Mechanicsburg. I have been here for a little over a year and I do not "know" any of my neighbors. Well, I know Michael. He is in the apartment next to me. He came over one night when a bat was in my bedroom and I was just a little freaked out and needed help to catch it. Michael and I both squealed and jumped around, but we were finally able to corner it and get it outside. We're that kind of neighbors. He shovels my sidewalk and I sweep his porch. I can call on him when I need to and he notices when I'm away for a few days.

And I know Brittany, who lives above us, well enough to say, "Good morning" and chat for a couple of minutes, but that's it. For the first time in my life I am living in a place where I don't know any or all of my neighbors. I can't even describe how foreign that is to me and it took some time to adjust. In fact, I think the adjustment was so slow and so subtle that by the time I realized it was happening, I had been here for several weeks.

The thing is, when I lived in Hanover, I was living by myself for the first time in my life and my office was in my home, therefore I spent a good part of my work week at home, alone, with no one else around. So, by the time I called it a day, I was desperate for people! Walking the neighborhood every evening exposed me to the colorful variety of the people who lived around me and I established some meaningful relationships with my neighbors. By the end of the evening my need for "socialization" and "community" was fairly well satisfied.

So, how have I adjusted to this radically different life? Well, it's the job thing. I am pastoring at Messiah Village Retirement Community now, and my "work" days are filled with people...filled to overflowing. Going home to a quiet, peaceful, empty apartment has taken on the semblance of refuge. It's where I can finally relax and recoup after a day filled with people and ministry. And I am loving the feeling of healthy balance for my particular needs. I need to be with people, but I also need the time without. Thank you, LORD, for giving me the ability to adjust well.

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