...self care is never a selfish act- it is simply good stewardship of the only gift I have, the gift I was put on earth to offer to others. Anytime we can listen to true self and give it the care it requires, we do so not only for ourselves but for the many others whose lives we touch.

Parker J. Palmer, Let Your Life Speak

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Because you are loved (1)

Insanity: extracting love from others 
God, grant me the serenity to accept the people I cannot change. from Adult Children of Alcoholics and Dysfunctional Families

For those of us who grew up where addiction/alcoholism/dysfunction was present, the first line of this prayer of serenity offers a reasonable, sane alternative to emotional chaos.

Insanity is trying to extract love and acceptance from others we cannot change and who cannot be present to us.
 
It's a life-giving choice to decide not give the keys of our happiness to anyone or anything outside of us. It will be an endless exercise in abandonment and desolation to turn to others to provide what is lacking in us: self acceptance and self-love.
 
It's a wonderful gift to realize that we have choices. Some are toxic to us because they cannot be present to us, having compulsions of their own. Workaholism comes to mind as one of the most insidious and socially-approved addictions of all.

Freedom is walking away from the chaos and insecurity of pulling from others what we can only give ourselves. That we provide to ourselves by being loved by God, accepting that love, and being present- to ourselves.  

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Having been in ordained ministry in the UMC for 34 years, I've experienced the truth that although, clergy are frequently present for others, no one can offer what they don't have.That's why if you're a clergy person, you need someone who will listen to you. Not the random next closest person available, but rather someone like a spiritual director, a therapist, a peer who can be fully present to you. I hope the links and posts you find here will give you ideas, humor, hope and encouragement. Scott Endress

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