I’m No Mother Teresa, Preface

(If you didn’t read my intro on why this serialized “book” of mine is appearing on the blog, you might want to check out the last post. In the final iteration of the book, the subtitle changed to Joyful Service in the Circus of Life, hence the circus illusions.)

I admire Mother Teresa, really I do. But I don’t want to be her. And that’s not just because she’s dead. I don’t want to be what she was when she was alive either, living in Calcutta, caring for the poorest and sickest of humanity day after day.

Intellectually, I believe in preserving our environment, pursuing justice for the poor, and being a global Christian. But I don’t want to sell our suburban, middle-class home, forgo eating out, buy only “green,” or make all food from scratch. Do I have to feel guilty for taking a vacation or eating a steak? Is it possible to live with a concern for social justice and still enjoy some of the finer things of life, or is it an all-or-nothing commitment?

See, I like my life. It may be crazy at times, much like a circus. I often feel like an acrobatic clown juggling plates of responsibility, trying to find the rhythm that will keep them from crashing down on my head. I’m trying to keep everyone entertained while I get more frantic as the pace picks up.

And yet I like my plates. And I’m willing to stay in the circus in order to keep them, most of them anyway.

That’s why I’m no Mother Teresa. I like having a closet of clothes to choose from, not just a simple sari. I like to have a pantry full of variety to eat and not a simple staple meal. I enjoy the many blessings of my life, but to do so, I must keep the plates spinning.


5 thoughts on “I’m No Mother Teresa, Preface”

  1. Ah, but to keep those plates spinning we must keep our eyes on the plates and not always on the things He would have us looking at.

    • True, Karen, it will always be a balancing act and require reflection to ensure that I haven’t picked up plates that God doesn’t want me to keep.

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