As I learned in my recent radio interview with him, Rev. Haywood Holderness is not a man with outspoken opinions until you ask him if it is our responsibility to feed each other. Suddenly this gentle giant gets fired up and if you aren’t donating food to your local food bank my advice is to run and do so quickly. In a world full of food, his answer is a resounding ‘yes’ and he means it.
Perhaps the “Rev.” gave you a clue that Haywood is a clergyman. Unlike many of his ilk, in addition to a degree in Theology, he also holds an MBA from Wharton School of Business, oh, and I should probably mention he was a code breaker for the US military. Far from a man with his head in the theological clouds, he is a man of God, living in the real world with homelessness, drug addict, and greed. Because we are created in the likeness of God, he believes we will triumph over all of these things and he takes daily steps to make that happen by finding resources for non-profits. Haywood is a man with a great case of Spirit.
Regardless of your personal title for spirit, I am referring to the driving force in life that compels us all to strive to make the world a better place. To me, the word spirit has some energetic implications, for example when I think of a spirited person, I think of someone who is engaged, passionate, and opinionated. Spirit drives us to make ourselves better, pushes us to be responsible, and is a manifestation in love. Spirit is non-judgmental and compassionate and Lord knows, patiently persistent. It is found in the nudging we feel to find the right type of work so we can be at peace with ourselves. It is the love we feel when looking at the world as the most beautiful place we’ve ever seen and embracing our role in taking care of it through our stewardship; it is the power we feel surging in our veins when we seek to right the big and small injustices being perpetrated around us. Spirit is what moves us into action if we embrace it and it speaks to us constantly, perhaps even the loudest when we are the quietest.
To catch a case of Spirit there is no way around it, you must engage, flex, nurture, and be guided by the heart muscle. You absolutely must care and in some cases, care so greatly that you are willing to give your life for whatever you truly care about. As Haywood says, “You must give to live.”
In my work, I truly get to see the variety of life in working with clients. Some people care about making the world beautiful through art, others are passionate and find joy in working with businessess. Sometimes the interests are specific like male/female workplace communication, or composing jazz music. It is important not to judge yourself by what you care about but to let it flow from you naturally. I’ve seen more people loose their fire because they’ve judged what brings them joy as not being of value to soceity and, for example, go to law school instead of art school only to find themselves hating their life and in need of career counseling later. Don’t do that.
Let your creative vision for the world and the Spirit within you, move you deeply to the edge of your possibility.