“By yourself you’re unprotected.
With a friend you can face the worst.
Can you round up a third?
A three-stranded rope isn’t easily snapped.”
Ecclesisates 4:12 (MSG)
When you’re facing the worst, to whom do you turn?
One of the beautiful things I have discovered about both studying and having my own counselling is that it offers a turning place.
It offers respite. A warm and cosy stop off. A haven space to turn towards, from which you regain strength to turn back into the day, the situation, the work, the person, no matter what mess you first came in to speak of.
But one thing I wonder is – are our friendships fostering this sort of relationship too? I sometimes wonder if more people are paying for counselling because their relationships aren’t offering this sort of connection, and what they are in need of is to simply be heard by a willing and gracious listener.
We can be lonely even amongst our friends and our people, because we’ve learned to squash our truth rather than acknowledge and/or speak it.
I think we underestimate the value of simply sharing honestly, and just what wonder that does to our souls.
Moreover, I think we underestimate the value of listening with love, rather than judgement as the guide.
Maybe this is why it’s hard to share, because somewhere we learned that judgement rather than love, was the currency through which we must operate.
But what if love, rather than judgement was what was received?
But what if love, rather than judgement was what heard the story?
Would there be less loneliness? Less demand for counsellors?
What kind of person are you for people to turn towards? Are they meet with love? Who do you know that allows you, all of you, to be? I wonder how much would change if this was what shaped the nature of our relationships?