Friday, March 7, 2008

Kevin's Joie de Vivre — "Looking For True Happiness"

My Unitarian Universalist Church in Groton is doing a sequence of "lay services" during our pastor's sabbatical, so I took on being one of the four people who gave the sermon in our worship service entitled "Looking For True Happiness", on February 10th, 2008. And it was really quite an amazing experience for me — my first time to speak from our lofty pulpit, all by myself "for 5 minutes". Moreover, for perhaps the first time in my life, I had the delightful experience of delivering my part of the sermon without any possibility of reading from prepared text since I completely forgot what day I had signed up to do this, and only found out two minutes before the service started that that day was 'today'.

Click here to view the YouTube presentation (slide show + audio recording of Kevin's talk)The theme for the day was "Looking For True Happiness", and in holding that context… each of us four speakers was asked to respond to these questions :
  • Once you decide you need more out of life, where do you start to look ?
  • How do you search ?
  • What clues do you have ?
  • And once you find it, how do you know it's the real thing ?
Clicking on the image to the left, the video clip begins with those questions being read aloud, followed by my answers. Just like my other audio-made-into-video clips, I use YouTube along with 'irrelevant' photos to make it into a slide show because that is the simplest way to host audio in a blog. Since this is my blog, the clip only includes my ¼ of the sermon.

The part I liked most about this experience was speaking from my heart, directly to the congregation. I will never forget the freedom I experienced by not having any notes to read from; there was nothing to do except just speak about what I have done for almost all of my life: Find a way to experience the glass as being half full, no matter what !!


Nanci Phelan said...

Hi Kevin

I just finished reading your blog and listening to your impromtu happiness speech. WOW you did an awesome job..... amazing. You sounded so relaxed and natural. I'm very proud of you. Too bad Lynn wasn't there to hear you but I'm sure she will like listening to the recording and how lucky they taped it for you. Having only ever heard you speak in front of a group at Mom's funeral, this speech made me think a lot of that..... similar tone, inflections, confidence, sensitivity, communication skills. It's hard to believe that you could speak in such a flowiing manner, with out ems and ahs and breaks when it was pretty much impromptu. Just goes to show you what one can do under pressure. How nice that you were able to share so openly and honestly with people. You and I are very blessed with that..... we don't hide our emotions or keep things bottled up. And thanks for sharing that. I helps me get to know you better and should get you lots of brownie points!!! :>) One thing I find interesting is that you really have thought deeply about your life's purpose and consciously set yourself on a positive path. You laid it all out so logically and clearly. I like the way you included your appreciation of the times you've failed. Isn't that true. We learn so much more from our mistakes. You look very happy in the You Tube screen shot but I keep expecting to see an ad for deodorant below it!!! The slide show was very nice..... some good shots of you. Lots of winter scenes. Will listen to it a few more times soon so may have some more comments but wanted to send you some feedback. I know this didn't happen over night!!! You must be feeling really great with the number of caring and supportive comments you've received from friends.... and all this couldn't come at a better time when you are between jobs. Brqavo!!! Maybe a new career is down your road to happiness!!!

love Nanci

Susan said...

Hi Kevin: Thank you. I really enjoyed your perspective. -- Susan M.