As President of the board of our local Unity church, one of my duties is to listen to every one's complaints. Whether I like it or not, it's part of the job and often it takes all the strength and faith I have in me to stay calm, centered and just listen rather than react. Yesterday was one such occasion. A woman who was new to our church was very upset with the board because we had decided to move the start time for our service to a half hour later. We share a church building with several other groups and at least three of them are coming out of their services at the same time that we are starting ours. You can imagine the mass of confusion in the hallways not to mention the parking lot. By starting a little later, we not only cut down on some of that confusion, but we have time to meet and greet our fellow "neighbors" at the same time. However, this woman was completely undone by our decision. Her main complaint was that her 5 year old son had to eat his lunch no later than 12:30 and it was obvious that our church just didn't support families! Our prayer chaplain, who was standing next to me at the time, was as taken aback as I was by the level of hostility this woman spewed forth, all because her son was supposedly going to perish if he ate lunch a little later on Sunday!
I would hate to have to live such a rigid, schedule controlled life, wouldn't you? That's like demanding that the daffodils and crocus come up immediately on the first day of Spring regardless of the fact that there is still several inches of snow on top of them. If I put a seed in the ground, and the seed packet said 6 weeks to germination, and at exactly six weeks I still didn't see any shoots, that does not mean that I had to give up gardening forever. It just means that 6 weeks means a 6 week period of optimal conditions. That being said, if we followed all of the directions correctly, the flowers will come up in their own good time when they are ready to.
If we set the intention to grow spiritually, creatively, or emotionally, but give ourselves a time limit to produce results, we are more than likely setting ourselves up for failure and massive disappointment. It's like trying to meditate for the first time and declaring it a lot of hogwash if we didn't reach enlightenment in the first try. Sometimes we have to let go of the outcome and stay present to the process. Do we want an attractive and soothing garden? Then at some point we have to let Mother Nature do what she does best and trust that she knows what's best. If we want to enjoy our spiritual experience, we have to set aside our ego induced rigidity and learn to go with the flow. I have raised two children, a step-child, and have 5 grandchildren, plus great grandchild#1. To the best of my knowledge, none of them suffered irreparable harm from eating lunch a little later. We just gave them a bigger breakfast that day and kept snacks in our bags just in case.
The point is that the best things in life really are worth waiting for, as the old saying goes. Spring will eventually get here all the way, and the plants will eventually make as beautiful a showing as they always do. So, too, will the good things in our lives come to fruition if we just plant the seeds, step back and wait for the roots to take hold. When we trust and let go of having to control the outcome, the most beautiful things will happen.
And so it is.