“Agitation drives out consciousness of God. When we’re driven by agitation, consumed by fretting, we become immersed in our own agenda, and it is always exaggerated. We get caught up in things that, in the final analysis, simply don’t count, in things that pass away, in things that are concerned with living comfortably rather than living well.”
These words from Joan Chittister stuck out as I was noticing that despite the centrality of this project to my life, I was not as personally focused as I naturally found myself in the opening days. I’m not agitated at all. I’m very peaceful. But I have work and family obligations that certainly prove that there’s a major lifestyle chasm between a part-time monk and a real-live monk.
We get used to things, I guess. I’m used to not eating. I’m used to the crack in my windshield. I’m used to my lifestyle. Some people are used to eating greasy food. Some people are used to emotional abuse. They are used to their lifestyles, whether in possession of a tyrannical agitator or not.
There are a number of goals that I established at the beginning of this project: spiritual tune-up, a hands-on historical study, re-evaluate balance, detox, evaluate my future, gain deeper appreciation, contribute to both the worlds of beer and Christianity.
The tag-line for my “regular” blog, brewvana, is “an ideal condition of harmony, beer and joy.” This is the style of our family. Beer is part of it, and while we plan vacations around brewery tours and tap lists, we work to have a balanced life experience which is very focused on the strength of our family. Take out the word beer and insert the word golf. The same effort to achieve balance should be made. Just because beer has alcohol in it doesn’t mean that it can do a better job of destroying a family than golf, money or work.
Getting caught up in “our own agenda” is what can blind-spot the notion of balance. A little self-awareness can go a long way in maintaining good relationships with others, especially God. And so if today brings any success in my laundry list of goals, I can know that my hopes of re-evaluating balance and tuning up spiritually haven’t fallen off the table, even if I have had a lot on my plate.
So to speak.
(145 pounds today)