Caring for Ourselves Enough to Care for Each Other

“Community is hard work,” Sister Anne Shepard, Prioress of Mount St. Scholastica (a community of Benedictine nuns in Kansas), said on television the other day.

The golden rule by Norman Rockwell
"The Golden Rule," by Norman Rockwell

She is so right. In order to be in community with each other, we must let go of self-absorption, try to listen carefully to each other, speak our truth lovingly, and want everyone to win.

Win-win is not just slogan, or a catchy phrase. It is a way of thinking, a way of life. It is another way to commit ourselves to live by the Golden Rule.

When we seek mutual benefit in all our interactions, we start thinking in terms of other people. As Stephen Covey writes, win-win “profoundly affects what we see as ‘important,’ how we spend our time, our response in the moment of choice, and the results we get in our lives.”

The community of which I am most centrally part, Metropolitan Community Church of Richmond, is not made up of women, or men, religious. But we are community nonetheless.

We are stronger when we care as much for each other as we do ourselves, and we care enough for ourselves to care for each other.