Take a little, now and then.

It is hard to give something to me. I was reflecting the other day on one of my posts about being told I was a good man, https://kiwipaulspoetry.wordpress.com/2013/07/04/if-someone-tells-me-i-am-a-good-man-one-more-time/. I reflected on why this was potentially so challenging for me. Some of the power in that narrative lies in my struggle between my need for intimacy and where that can lead to and my relationship with the church. I certainly have relied on grace in the last few years, but when I step away from the whole notion that one class of sin is worse than another (shhh don’t tell the evangelicals that sexual sin is the same as turning a blind eye to those in need in their own congregation).
I remembered that I have struggled with being praised for as long as I can remember Odd that for a person who has sought the affirmation of others that I should reject it when it comes my way. It is a reflection on my insecurities. Did I say that aloud? Sometimes I am insecure! Ouch! Well it is true there are some situations where I am insecure, not so much these days as with a reformation of my mind and a work in progress in myy body I am coming to see that actually some of the things that I do I am good at!
So when I separate those things out I then think about what kinds of gifts I find hard to accept and why. Acts of service are very important to me but I am a reluctant recipient of such gifts to me. Especially when I feel they are unearned, even perhaps un warranted. There are two that stood out for me in recent times, one of these was a very long time ago, a friend of mine came to me and sought to wash my feet. It was a very challenging time for me to accept such an act of service. Washing someone’s feet is a profound statement. Feet are considered to be a very dirty part of the body in contact with all sorts of different things. That not withstanding, any act of cleansing someone’s body in any form is highly personal, it happens in some limited forms, (hairdressing, manicures, even dentists) but it is generally only accepted when someone is incapacitated and unable to do it for themselves. Accepting the help of someone else in cleansing yourself can be difficult as it is an admittance of inability or incapacity. For obvious reasons we often let our hair be cut by another rather than ourselves, like wise a semi surgical cleaning of our teeth. So what about a cleansing of our mind, heart and soul. Where do we turn to get that cleansed.
When we have self inflicted detritus that clogs our soul and spirit it can be somewhat easier to cleanse, the power of confession and contrition to a trusted person or if you are so inclined to a priest is restorative and powerful. Some of us are fortunate to have a relationship with God that enables us to talk directly and sort it out one to one. I will look at confession in another blog as interesting as it is it is a little meander down the wild side from where I want to go with this blog.
Where do we go when it is the actions of others that inflicts its suppurating, sourness upon us? We are exposed to all sorts of nastiness everyday in the news, it can be easy to turn off to, but when it hits us personally where can you turn. Now f someone else tells me to give it all to Jesus one more time they may find themselves face to face with their maker a little quicker than what they imagined, even if it is just a temporary loss of earthly consciousness.
Real people feel pain and hurt, sometimes it is directly and sometimes it is by association, the worst kind of pain is that of children, people who do not have the skills or the agency to deal with it. I am amidst a lot of this pain at the moment and personally it is building up. I spent a little time at the beach and that helped me process it somewhat today but I know that unfortunately it is going to be increased as I deal with some issues.
I take my own advice here and give it to myself as much as to others, should someone seek to wash your feet, (not literally necessarily ) but if they wish to perform an act of service for you be gracious enough to accept it as it is healing.
Well that meandered a little from whence I started however I am happy with where it ended, perhaps a little deeper on confession and my own inability to accept things that are good being said about me another day.
Live Love and Laugh,
Paul

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