Wednesday was my wife’s birthday, so I sent some flowers to her office. She sent me a text message, thanking me for the flowers. I responded “did you like the dog?”
“What?” she wrote back.
“The flowers were supposed to be in the shape of a dog– sounds like maybe not?”
“Wait, hold on.”…”Oh, wow! The bouquet was turned sideways and I didn’t even see the dog!”
As most of you know, we are in middle of our annual pledge drive, so this question of “what is possible” has been on my mind and our leaders’ minds. As I scroll through spreadsheets, I try to hold onto our congregation’s mission, hold onto the big picture, in my head and heart. Our human minds are subject to all kinds of evolutionary habits that often do not serve us well in our modern circumstances– like the brain’s negativity bias. Human brains will pay more attention to danger, threat, and negative experiences than to neutral or positive experiences. In other words, something very positive will generally have less of an impact on a person’s behavior and thinking than something equally emotional but negative.
It is so easy to look at circumstances (and spreadsheets) and “miss the dog” so to speak. In fact, our brains may be so focused on looking for “lions, tigers, and bears” that we are almost ensured to be missing the opportunities and generosities that may be abundantly surrounding us. What possibilities are hiding in plain sight?
This Sunday: Possibilities in the Eternity of Now–What are the possibilities created in the eternity of now? Todd Whiteley delivers a sermon written by Rev. Kathleen Ellis. Worship Leaders this week are Avonelle Tomlinson, Todd Whiteley, and Sabine Klein.