As I’m preparing to leave for the 2021 Missouri Grand Lodge Communication, I feel anxious, blessed, and reflective. I feel anxious as the COVID pandemic took so much from us and in reality, continues to do so. I feel blessed as I get to gather in the mystic ties of brotherhood with so many good Masons over the next few days. I feel reflective in that what came before me built the perspective from which I see today.
As we embark on today’s journey to the Grand Lodge Communication, I joyously followed Brother Matt Parker’s postings from North Carolina’s Grand Lodge Communication and Brother Mohamad Yatim’s and others’ postings of a new AMD Council in Chicago. The excitement expressed through these brothers’ reporting their activities becomes, dare I say contagious? I was ready to leave early for Grand Lodge hitting the road yesterday, even though I knew the big festivities begin today.
Brother Cameron Adamson flew into St. Louis yesterday, and as I picked him up from the airport, that feeling of excitement over gathering to meet continued to remind me of the many blessings we Masons enjoy through our work. Brother Cameron’s sheer joy at traveling to another jurisdiction to share in the fraternal aspects, meet and greet brothers from another country, discuss all things Masonic with new and old acquaintances? Again, contagious. Brothers Joshua Herbig and Parth Patel are making their morning preparations, and the plans include meeting up with them to speak to a new candidate and drop off a petition. A new petition? On the way to Grand Lodge? Absolutely electric.
As Brother Masons spread out all over the globe, we aren’t alone in doing charity, but we are blessed in being together to do charitable work. We aren’t the only organization founded in brotherhood, but we are blessed to have such a rich and solid tapestry of history to which we can proudly point. We focus on the daily work, the next project, the lodge repair, or the next piece of equipment we need to purchase, yet at the end of the day, we made a difference. We reflect upon our work yesterday and beyond, and we see the future by building our trestle board taking our past into account.
In the Robin Williams movie, Dead Poets Society, Williams’ character reminds us to: “Carpe Diem”, or "Seize The Day". He goes on to push his students to make their lives extraordinary. Another quote from the movie is "Just when you think you know something, you have to look at it in another way. Even though it may seem silly or wrong, you must try." Spoiler if you haven’t seen it: This is where he memorably stands on his desk, explaining it is all about gaining perspective. We as Masons are given different perspectives. We learn through the degrees to look at so many different things and ideas via these different perspectives. Every working tool, every symbol, lecture, and charge reinforces the means to gain a new perspective.
Are you seizing today? Are you gaining perspective? How are you going to use that new perspective to be a better Mason today?