~ John 1:1-5
"And it's the greatest story ever told, that when it looked like there was no
more hope. Love walked in through the door, face to face
with brokenness said, 'it's still worth dying for.'
Met the world with a kiss, walls fell down, When love walked in."
~ Love Walked In, Mark Schultz, 2012
So many stories I hear each day as a therapist. Stories of brokenness and hopelessness. One of these days, the dream I had long before I realized God was directing my steps towards becoming a counselor, will become a reality. Until then I think of the all the little things that occur each day where I can see that "love walked in." The times throughout my day or the day of a client where I can truly see God's hand. While I know He is always with us and His hand is upon us, it's in those moments when I reflect back on my day or week and realize God had me the whole time...I can see it now.
One of the biggest struggles I'm seeing with my clients right now is such tall walls and an inability to trust others. It breaks my heart because I see so much of my past reflecting back at me through their struggles. I want to scream and shout that it gets better, that when all is said and done the one person most affected by the walls and inability to trust is the person putting the wall up and choosing not to trust. I cannot explain in enough words that people who break trust have struggles all their own and their choices have nothing to do with the person they betrayed. While I am fully aware that does not make trusting others easy and an automatic, "okay, what the heck, let's jump right on in to the deep end without knowing how to swim" kind of a response, I also know life is about taking risks and learning lessons. There is no owners manual to the game of life (unless of course you are indeed playing the board game, "Life"). The best I can do as a counselor is trust that somewhere along the way what I share, how I push my clients to think beyond their circumstances, it will all sink in. Or maybe I'm not the wisest person they ever talk to in their life and someone else is the one that pushes them to that "Ah Ha" moment. I love what my co-worker reminds me almost daily..."we're planting seeds." It's a good way to look at it and takes a tremendous amount of pressure off, sometimes.
The reason I really sat down to write tonight was that I felt disconnected from the very thing I love to do...talk to others. I came home so incredibly sick today from a migraine and while I was forced to rest, because I could barely move to do anything else, I started thinking about my "love walked in" moments (as I like to call them). You see there are a number of "moments" where I have no doubt that God walked in, He truly pulled me out of darkness and saved me. One thing that I'm incredibly vocal about and blessed to be saved from is Anorexia Nervosa. I see so much shame, guilt, and imprisonment amongst women who suffer from this disorder. I see so much ignorance and insensitivity from those who struggle to educate themselves about it. Don't get me wrong, there are a number of things I have failed to educate myself on so I can clearly identify my own sensitivity to people not understanding the disease of Anorexia, or any other eating disorder for that matter. I know that I'm too close to it to allow myself to become too heated about it.
My other significant "love walked in" moment is that of losing my nephew, Billy Jr., to SIDS at 5 months old. While God has done a tremendous healing in my heart, I cannot help but look back on that season of life with such gratitude that despite my anger, God never let go of my heart. In fact, He loved me so much that as I allowed Him to heal my heart what I got was one that beats stronger and has learned to love that much more greatly. With my "love walked in" moments I have room to love deeply those who suffer from a disease that comes with such shame and guilt, as well as those who have faced the unexplainable loss of a child. I'm no expert, but as I continue to trust God and His love for me, I hope and pray that love is reflected off me and onto others.
"We love because he first loved us."
~ 1 John 4:19