...self care is never a selfish act- it is simply good stewardship of the only gift I have, the gift I was put on earth to offer to others. Anytime we can listen to true self and give it the care it requires, we do so not only for ourselves but for the many others whose lives we touch.

Parker J. Palmer, Let Your Life Speak

Friday, December 11, 2009

Priceless "Cold Delight"

Ecclesiastes 7:8 states that patience is better than pride. Last night Browns fans' patience paid off!

They had a rare opportunity to see a Cleveland win over the Steelers. Cleveland fans who showed up in the sub-zero wind chill also had the priceless gift of telling the many Pittsburgh guests present at Browns Stadium to enjoy the late-night trip home. And they can carry the news that this year, Pittsburgh's season will end at exactly the same time Cleveland's will.

Living out of town for many years, I saw it courtesy of the NFL Network. It looked like a typical, pre-2000 game with plenty of emotion from the home team, defensive muscle-flexing, and the Browns finally taking advantage of their home cooking with only their second win in 2009, still assuring them of very high draft choices in 2010.

In the what-have-you-done-for- me- lately world of American sports, and just about everything else, I'm not sure there's anything of learning value here. Or is there? Last year's Champion has been dethroned by a 2-11 team, and knocking them off has made the Browns' season better in a way that beating any other team could not.

No love lost with Pittsboigg. As a team, city, and fan-dom, they refused to honor Cleveland's 1995 going- away- black- arm- band- party that dark year. So much for the special place we think we have in our rival's heart. More recently some Steelers have whined about Cleveland-Pittsburgh not really being a rivalry, with games being lopsided in their favor since 2000.

But it was never about the last few years only. It is about shared history, which has shown eras of dominance from either team and many, many close finishes. And it's in the long view that last night's brawl is priceless. Some things only patience can appreciate.

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Having been in ordained ministry in the UMC for 34 years, I've experienced the truth that although, clergy are frequently present for others, no one can offer what they don't have.That's why if you're a clergy person, you need someone who will listen to you. Not the random next closest person available, but rather someone like a spiritual director, a therapist, a peer who can be fully present to you. I hope the links and posts you find here will give you ideas, humor, hope and encouragement. Scott Endress

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