I enter the gym to a crowd of new members trying out equipment in their rarely-used running shoes. The locker room is filled with the chatter of women on their first workout-high. “How wonderful this feels!” They exclaim before the muscle soreness sets in. Yes, it’s that time of year again. Resolution time.
As I listen to the typical resolutions (lose weight, eat better, get organized, save more money etc.) I can’t help but notice how focused they are on the self. While no doubt these are healthy behaviors that we strive to achieve in 2012, the underlying theme is “me.” I am going to ___.
I would like to challenge you to a new way of viewing resolutions. What is the purpose of thousands of improved individuals if that improvement does not go beyond ourselves? I propose that we take the time to embark on community resolutions, and with the same fervor as our first run or bank deposit, train ourselves to become a healthier, stronger community.
Where to start? 2012 offers important moments in political elections, economic hopes, and social endeavors. We saw last year that when small groups take the time to dream and communicate, great things can happen. We need to look no further than Time’s Person of the Year: The Protester. Grass-roots leaders from Egypt to Tunisia to China to the US renewed their commitment to bettering their nations.
Visions of the future are powerful. Instead of dictating my own ideas for community resolutions, I want us to use this forum to generate them together. Need help? Perhaps we can start with the charism of Brothers and Sisters of Love:
*How can we love God and one another better as a community this year? When we cannot love, what does that tell us?
*What fears must we overcome to make the political, economic, and civic decisions that will improve the most lives?
*What groups or people do we need to forgive in order to work together for peace? Who do we oppress with our lack of forgiveness? What progress do we stall by remaining angry at others? What do our fears tell us?
*How much do we trust God? Do we trust God enough to dream big for our communities?
What do we dare accomplish for the poor in 2012? We want to hear from you! Please leave your suggestions and resolutions in the comments section, and may we all resolve to commit our resources, energy, and love to a better community in the upcoming year.
Happy New Year from Brothers and Sisters of Love.
–Megan Sherrier, BSL
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