I believe in showing up. I believe that being present to each moment is the most sacred act I can share with the world and with my Creator.
Showing up on the road for a run – even when I would rather stay under covers in the morning – informs me that being healthy matters. Whether it is a cold, rainy morning or a hot, humid afternoon, I show up – to my air-conditioned apartment on the seat of my stationary bike, or to my living room for pilates, or to a nearby trail for a walk. If even for 20 minutes, I show up. After doing lunges three times a week for the last several months, I realized yesterday, as I ran up that hill-that-shall-not-be-named, that I feel stronger, physically, each day, and I could be present to that moment.
Showing up at gatherings or potlucks – even when I cannot afford to bring a dish to share – informs my awareness that relationships and community matter. Whether an end-of-season committee celebration or a “coffee?” invitation from a new friend, I show up. I ate pancakes at our church’s Shrove Tuesday dinner this year across from a woman who shared with me her joy of not having symptoms after her first round of chemo. Her grateful smile and her renewed sense of hope for a healthy future left me in a state of exuberance. Although the meal cut into my budget, I showed up. I was spiritually renewed by our conversation and our deepening relationship. Now she shows up in my life, asking how I am doing.
Showing up at endless interviews – even when I felt uncertain about the company or the job – informed my self awareness and increased my self confidence. Usually nervous at first, but once I showed up, I realized that I was the expert on me. Though most interviews resulted in no call-backs or a denial letter, I did my footwork for that day and I felt that I had done my part. I believe that by showing up to that discussion, the interviewer will remember me and be changed for our interaction.
Showing up at my new job on Monday, as a chaplain on a team at a level-one trauma center, begins a new chapter in my life. Uncertain as to what the year-long residency will require, I am going to show up – with my whole self – and be in the fullness of each moment, with God’s help.
I believe in showing up, again and again. And every time, God reminds me that I am loved and teaches me hope and faith. In ordinary moments, by showing up, I can experience a transforming sacredness of that moment – with all that was, and is, and is to come. By showing up, alert to the moment, I experience the web of all creation. I believe in loving my neighbor as myself – by simply, showing up. And that, is a sacred act.