Friday, January 18, 2008

Intellectual Well-Being

Intellectual Well-Being

Today, I am going to share with you the write-up on Intellectual Well-Being. This is the fifth and final installment on the wheel (aren't you glad).

The 5 (spokes) of a Balanced Life

Spiritual Well-Being
Physical Well-Being
Emotional Well-Being
Social and Interpersonal Well-Being
Vocational Well-Being

As professionals in training after years of school, we laugh in frustration at the thought of continuing education and use it to reconnect with friends or to escape to a nice place. As we become more seasoned, we recognize the value in learning new things to continually challenge our minds and relearning old things in new ways to refresh what has become stale.

Just as children ask questions that are often a challenge to answer, so do the members of congregations look to their pastors and leaders for answers. Sometimes these answers come easily, and other times the issues are complex and require a more thoughtful response. Keeping our minds keen through education, personal study, and challenging conversations keeps our responses more finely tuned. A musical instrument kept in its case may need some attention to get the most out of it. A seasoned performer can make music with little preparation, but the finest musicians practice daily and can get the full range of beautiful music from their instrument. They respond quickly to a conductor’s baton and can make each performance a unique and personalized experience.

Our mind is a gift from God, but how we use it is under our control. Using it fully demands time, energy, and care. We must invest in the health of our minds just as we invest in the health of our bodies and spirits.

I have been trying to stretch my mind "intellectually". This has come in two forms recently. The first one is reading. I try to keep my mind challenged through the writings of other individuals. I am also listening to video classes from universities. I am currently watching some through Cal-Berkly. These classes are not classes that will enhance the ministry per se but they are classes that are challenging my intellect.

I think that it is very important that we keep challenging our mind.

As, I look at the wheel. I think that I have few spokes that are fine and there are others that I am working on. My goal is that I will be "balanced" in the wellness at the end of '08.

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