Tuesday, November 03, 2015

Thankful for "Mitleid-Help"

Some days seem lined with words like, "Joy" and "Hope", but then there are the days that surround us with calls, conversations, and unspoken chats that long for "Mitleid-Help".

Mitleid- Help for what is going wrong.
Mitleid-Help to meet an impossible deadline.
Mitleid-Help from ears to hear the story we long to tell.
Mitleid-Help to share in when things get a little crazy.

The call for "Mitleid-Help" does more than ask for our time and energy.
These calls ask for who we are to show up, to stand up and give ourselves to the other.
This is not pity, for pity only makes the distance between people grow.
These calls are not one sided.
They are reciprocal.
They are not demands.
"Mitleid-Help" is a request to be with the other - and the other to be with us.

Mitleid-Help for me.
Mitleid- Help for you.
Help is the "Mitleid" - the compassion,
that brings us together so that all can be held secure,
no matter how crazy things get.

Image found at Wikiquote
William-AdolpheBouguereau, 
Compassion 


Monday, November 02, 2015

Thankful for Beth

Years ago, I had the pleasure to meet Beth Whitney when attending an Youth Ministry Forum at Princeton Seminary. Our conversation started over mutual compliments over headbands, scarves or some such nominal thing.

While conversations like this don't often go past the day they happen, this one lived on.

We live far apart.
We work in different fields.
But thanks to social networking and the strong relationships built with the Youth Ministry Institute's Cohort - we are still connected.

Beth is an amazing musician as well as a friend, mom, spouse and human being.
Today she shared a new video and song focused on the space for worry in life. 
These words cut me to the quick...

"If I fall...keep my picture on the wall."

We all worry.
But we also have people who hold us - and our pictures close.

I'm thankful to know Beth and that our first conversation over pretty accessories was more important than we realized.

I'll keep your picture on the wall, thanks Beth.

For your own appreciation, here is Beth and her husband Aaron singing "Sweet On You".

Sunday, November 01, 2015

Thankful for '"JOY!"




This a photo of my friend Pat Moser who created amazing pumpkin sculptures for years in spite of living with MS. (To view more of his "Grumpkins" click here.)

Pat lived life in "Joy!" and challenged so many others to joyful living as well. Just after I shared Pat's philosophy of "Joy" on Sunday morning, I came across a reusable cup at Starbucks that was for sale. It simply said the word, "JOY".

While "JOY" is not something that erases the difficulty of life, it is something to carry (like my cup) to all aspects of living.
"JOY" is, to me, the freedom to live knowing that God is always with me, understanding me, and patient with me in my failings. Living in "JOY" allows me to move into the sadness and grief that is a part of life - 
Because I'm not alone in it. (Or are you.)

While Pat passed away in 2010, his challenge to living in "JOY" remains today and every day.
For all the challenge,
For all the pain,
For all the grief we carry - there also is room for "JOY"
Hold on to "JOY"!