How to find my soul a home
Where water is not thirsty
And bread loaf is not stone
I came up with one thing
And I don’t believe I’m wrong
That nobody, But nobody
Can make it out here alone.
(Maya Angelou Full poem here.
Many years ago, when I graduated from seminary with the precious M.Div degree that I needed to become a Unitarian Universalist minister, the tradition was to have each graduate give a short, individual speech during the commencement ceremony.
I began my speech with Maya Angelou’s poem, “Alone.” And then I broke all the rules. I invited my friend and colleague Melinda McCormick to join me at the podium, and the two of us gave a commencement speech TOGETHER.
Why? Because ministry is never a solo act – it’s shared! Because the home for our souls that offers water and bread that are real and satisfying is Community, not isolation. Because the work of Unitarian Universalism requires resilience – and resilience requires companions we can turn to for solace, support, and celebration!
Our western culture is full of messages like these:
“Pull yourself up by your own bootstraps”
“You’ve got to stand on your own two feet!”
“If you want something done right, do it yourself.”
“It’s my way or the highway!”
Can’t you just feel the rigidity in those statements? To be human, we have to have a strong and sturdy structure of values, but we also need a webworks of elastic, resilient, muscles, tendons, and ligaments to help us bend and flex and stretch our way through life’s challenges and changes.
For February, we’re exploring the theme “We are a People of Resilience. “UUCW is a community of resilient people — and a community that is, itself, resilient. And best of all — a community for all of us. Because, in the poet’s words, “Nobody, but nobody, can make it out here alone.”
Blessings to you all,
The Rev. Suzelle Lynch, Minister