I just received an invitation to a fabulous mindset retreat scheduled for October in beautiful Ft. Lauderdale, Fl. You may be wondering, why would anyone bother about mindset retreats? What is a mindset anyway?
Any dictionary you consult will include “a mental attitude”, “fixed”, “way of thinking” and “how one responds” in its definition of mindset.
In the Gospel Reading for Proper 9 (Year B) Jesus taught in the synagogue in Nazareth – his hometown – and those who heard him were astounded. “Where did this man get all this?” they wondered. Why? Because he was just one of them: “the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother James and Joses and Judas and Simon”. They even knew his sisters! (Mark 6: 1-13).
That was the mindset of the people of Nazareth. Their worldview of a carpenter was fixed and they had fixed ideas of what he should say and do. Jesus was upsetting their mindset and their worldview. That is why Jesus said, “Prophets are not without honor, except in their hometown, and among their own kin, and in their own house”. It is the same reason that Jesus was “amazed at their unbelief”.
All of us, like the people of Nazareth, have our worldviews which have been shaped by our mindset. In all cases, mindsets limit our scope and possibilities. I imagine everyone is familiar with phrases like, “that is impossible”, “you can’t do it”, “you don’t have the training (or education)”, “no one in the family has done that” or “what family is it?” and so on. Until one breaks out of the cycle, one will believe those phrases and one’s world will similarly be limited.
Thus, we need a mindset retreat, not only in October, but every day because most limitations are of our own making. Jesus is offering possibilities – the same possibilities he offered to his townsfolk of Nazareth. And the question for every one of us is: What is limiting you? The problem most probably is the mindset.