I want to start off by saying that I don’t watch TV news. It is my goal to be done with paid TV by the end of the year. However I am very well informed of the unparalleled, distressing, and traumatic times we have lived through over the past week. Through videos, photos, first hand accounts, discussion, as well as my own research and insights — I develop a perspective on life. I normally would not touch a matter that is seemingly political in one of my weekly briefings, but the matter at hand squarely intersects with my domain — technology and its use or misuse.
Like many of you, I have gone through a whole gamut of emotions since January 6th. Ultimately, I have tried to draw connections to the past and develop a balanced perspective. Reflecting on the past week and really the past four years, I wrote what amounted to a 6-page essay over the weekend. The problem is that it is not at the extreme end of either current major political philosophy and therefore, I don’t think anyone would publish it. The problem with our TV news is that “Network A” only likes to pander to their viewers to mainly report on the extreme elements of the philosophy (and its practitioners) that they disagree with. “Network B”, likewise, only likes to pander to their viewers to mainly report on the extreme elements of the philosophy (and its practitioners) that they disagree with. It’s ratings driven. It’s sensational. By and large the American people eat, sleep, and drink it all day long. I need to be on a diet, but that’s not the diet I want to be on.
The past four years of our American lives have been an intensely political time with strong emotions. This may surprise you if you have never had these interactions with me, but I would say that in this stretch of time clients have expressed some sort of political frustration 30 to 40% of the time. I have learned to be a good listener. At an appointment a client just said to me today, “I should just lay on a couch when you come over. You are like a computer psychologist.” Sometimes I just smile and nod. I try to make clients feel comfortable. Such a response should not signify agreement (from me or anyone in life), but I want to say that I am grateful for hiring me and I accept you sharing your frustration and pain. A little under 10 years ago, I was accepted to a Professional Counseling Master’s program. I ultimately dropped out, but I think I would have made a very compassionate psychotherapist. I try to incorporate those therapeutic skills and the heart of a teacher (another career I didn’t quite succeed at LOL) in my client interactions whenever possible. It’s what makes our relationship so unique. I want to leave a legacy of changed and improved lives.
It takes two to tango. The tides flow in and out. I think to have true healing in unity in this country (or even a country like Indonesia where there is also a lot of division right now), we have to take time to listen to what others on the completely opposite side of the spectrum have to say. We need to break bread and have meaningful dialog. The organizing and actions of mob violence in all forms that we have seen on the American landscape over the past year are illegal and should be prosecuted. However, when you step away from the fringes of both political extremes, you see neighbors, co-workers, and family members who just want to peacefully live their lives. On numerous fronts, there a lot of hurt people out there. (Something I learned from the therapeutic arena is…) Hurt people, hurt people. I’ll say it again: hurt people, hurt people!
So we have to decide, what do we want our legacy to be? One thing is for certain, I am not letting mine be defined by the fringes of society or any TV network.
Thank you for letting me share this message. I’ll step off my soapbox now.
This is a special ‘Words of Hope’ message that I feel called to share with you today…
Not all readers of The Acronym are getting this via e-mail, but I have chosen to send it to you personally because I think it delivers a message of truth in love that applies to you. I know you are concerned about relationship issues and may have had some bad experiences in the past — even divorce. I pray that what I share can bless you in a powerful way. Please feel free to share this message with others who may be in the same season of their life. If it helps you, I know it can be a light for them.
I want to start off by saying that God speaks to me. What? You can’t be serious! Oh I am and very. I would say to anyone who claims to be Christian that if God isn’t speaking to you — something is very wrong. In this scenario it is very possible that you have gone through the motions of religion all your life or for part of your life and thought this meant you really know Jesus. It doesn’t. Trust me, religion stinks!! If you’re going to church because you think you have to or stopped going because it became routine or a burden — you’ve missed the boat. If going to church on a regular basis is the entire essence of your spiritual life, your life is only 10% full. Think of this message as a life preserver….splash!
I started a volunteer assignment yesterday by helping a friend with her college application essays. She’s a good kid, but struggles with a broken heart from the past and is really searching for a purpose to live for. I was jostled awake in my sleep by God, through the the Holy Spirit, with an important message to share with this young woman and all others whom I think could benefit from it. God made it clear that the message also applies to me and my own life. Here it is:
God knows you have a past and have done things that you’re not proud of. He knows that you’ve acted out sexually or inappropriately, perhaps a little or a lot. No one close to you may know what you did, but God knows. He doesn’t want to punish you. He wants to love you. Jesus, who was God in human flesh, wants to wrap is arms around you. The Lord will take your burden and relieve of you of this dead weight. By holding on to this pain, it just creates doubt within you. It becomes a barrier to progress. Jesus wants you to call on him and ask for a new life and a second chance. (If you’ve done this before, continue to pray and fellowship with other believers!! Ask God to fill you with his never-ceasing presence. Perhaps your tank is a little empty right now.) He wants you to know that you can have a virgin heart, no matter how wrong your behavior was. You can be forgiven! This is God’s free gift to you. It’s called GRACE. There is nothing you have to do, no level you have to buy into, and certainly no recognition you have to obtain. Pray for God’s purpose and direction to be revealed to you…and it will be yours.
I hope these Words of Hope have touched you. If you’re confused about what I’ve shared, e-mail me back. Contact me. My lines of communication are always open. If you’ve never heard something like this in your life, but wonder ‘Could this guy be right? What does it all mean?’ Don’t be shy. Speak — I think now is your time to really live life like you’ve never done before.