Growth through Connection

The only real way to grow is through connection. Sometimes we think we need to pressure, prod, or push growth by telling people what to do or making a plan to which they must adhere. The only real growth in the natural world around us, though, is through cells connecting with one another. There is no real laid out plan for how plants should grow (except maybe their DNA – the plans are encoded within), and there is not someone there demanding they straighten themselves up and reach out further toward the sun. The cells just come together and through some magical interaction, plants grow. Read More

Pain as A Gateway

I am in pain with my brother. People say a lot of things when you are grieving, and you don’t hear most of them. They don’t land. They don’t even make sense. You are just in pain and all you need is for people to be there in your pain with you. You don’t need them to say anything or try to interpret why this happened or tell you it’s going to be alright or “God has a purpose.” None of that helps. Only your presence helps, your commitment to be there grieving with them until they are done. I stay in pain with my brother as long as he is in pain, however long that takes. If that takes a lifetime, I will be there. Read More

Keep Your Losses Close

When we experience loss or trauma, we don’t forget. And it’s good to keep our traumas, our dark nights of the soul, our griefs and losses in mind.  We can learn from them. Even when you’re bursting forth with growth, you should always remember and acknowledge it can all be whisked away in a moment. You can die any second, so be thankful – for life and death. You may have another dark night of the soul, another loss, another little death coming, but it will just be another step back from which you will recover and live to fight again. Even your “big death” is just your entrance into a new life, or your going back into the Great Life, so there is nothing to fear! Read More

Holding Tension

It strikes me how much tension is in the world. It’s hard to contain sometimes. If you sit with two people in conflict, sometimes you feel like you’re going to burst. It’s all you can do to stand up to it. We all have people in our lives who are in conflict with one another. (Lately it has seemed like our whole country has been in conflict!) The easiest thing to do when you are in the middle is side with one against the other: “They are wrong and we are right!” If you love them both, however, that is not a choice you get to make. You mostly just want to see them stop fighting and be nice to each other. Unless you want to be drawn into conflict, too, the only thing you can do is absorb it. That means you hold the tension. You become a conduit – not a fun thing to do. It’s painful. It seems to take all the strength you have sometimes. You want the people you love to be at peace with one another. Read More

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