Clergy Faith & Wellness: Pondering the faith, wellness connection

Rev. Shelly Petz


 I have been thinking about faith and wellness a lot lately.
I've wondered: 
how my faith affects my wellness, 
how my faith affects the wellness of others,
how my wellness affects my faith, 
how my wellness affects the faith of others,
how my faith affects my faith, 
how my faith affects the faith of others, 
how my wellness affects my wellness, 
and how my wellness affects the wellness of others.
It is this last one that has really invited me to pause and think deeply. My own wellness affects the wellness of others. My spiritual, mental, emotional and physical wellness affect my interactions with my family, neighbors, colleagues, laity, people whom I encounter in person, in virtual meetings, on phone calls, in emails and texts.
These interactions are a gift and a responsibility. I believe it is my responsibility to bring the best of myself to each encounter. If I am honest with myself, I know that there have been moments over these past few months when I have not been as well as I could have been. I have learned more about myself and the need to give myself permission to tend to my wellness so that I can be better for those around me, which allows them to explore the depths of their wellness also.
I also have been exploring that I do not know the full extent of what wellness looks like for my neighbor.
It has opened up a season of listening more intently than I have before to the voices of my neighbor. If I am to love my neighbor, Lord help me love my neighbor as they long to be loved, not as I want them to be loved. 
My personal mission statement that has guided me for the last several years is: To know, discover, and proclaim God's unconditional love. During this liminal season, I am discovering this anew, for myself, and for others. I am grateful for what I am learning, and welcome conversation partners for the journey.
Your life affects mine, and so many others. So, I wonder what I can learn about what it means for you to be well, and what role each of us has in investing in that.

--Rev. Shelly Petz
Clergy Faith & Wellness