Thursday, October 16, 2008

Just Walk With Me

During our "home assignment" time last year, I attended as many classes and Bible studies offered through our church as I could since I really needed to recharge and renew. One of the classes I took was called "Interrupted Expectations" and really was a life-changing event for me. I experienced a lot of healing there and was introduced to the whole concept of grieving the losses of life. The class was based on the book Recovering from the Losses in Life by H. Norman Wright. Since then, I've been reading materials about the subject in the hopes that God will use me to encourage others. I don't think I have much experience yet or am even very good at it, but I continue to learn and pray that God will give me wisdom. The following is from the book Walking With Those Who Weep-A Guide to Grief Support by Don and Ron Williams. It's not extremely eloquent, but spoke to my heart.

Just Walk With Me
I have a problem. I want to tell you about it. No, I really don't. I'd rather keep it to myself; handle it alone. I do think it would be good for me to share it with you, though. I don't want to because I'm afraid of what you'll say or how you'll act.
I'm afraid you might feel sorry for me in a way that makes me feel pathetic-like I'm some 'poor thing'.
I'm afraid you'll try to cheer me up. That you will give me words, or texts or prayers that tell me in a subtle way to stop feeling bad. If you do that I'll feel worse (but hide it behind my obedient cheerful smile). I'll feel you don't understand. I'll feel you are making light of my problem (as if it can be brushed away with some brief words of cheer).
I'm afraid you'll give me an answer. That this problem that I've been wrestling with for some time now and about which I have thought endless thoughts will be belittled. You can answer in a half-minute what I've struggled with for weeks?
I'm afraid also you might ignore my problem; talk quickly about other things, tell me of your own.
I'm afraid too you might see me stronger than I am. Not needing you to listen and care. (It's true, I can get along alone, but I shouldn't have to).
What I'd really like is if you would "just walk with me." Listen as I begin in some blundering, clumsy way to break through my fearfulness of being exposed as weak. Hold my hand and pull me gently as I falter and begin to draw back. Say a word, make a motion, or a sound that says, "I'm with you." If you've been where I am tell me how you felt in a way that I can know you're trying to walk with me-not change me.
But I'm afraid...
You'll think I'm too weak to deserve respect and responsibility...
You'll explain what's happening to me with labels and interpretation...Or you'll ask me, "What'ya going to do about it?"
PLEASE, just walk with me. All those other things seem so much brighter and sharper, and expert. But what really takes love is to 'Just Walk with Me.'
I'm sure, what I want is people who have a Shepherd as their model. People who in their own way bring to others an experience of: "The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want...Yes, even when I walk through the valley, You're with me (walking with me)."


Terri :o) said...

I really wanted to take that class, then I started working and it sort of threw me off, so I never signed up, even though now I realized I could take the class and work my schedule around it. Maybe they'll offer it again. Until then, maybe I'll just read the book. However it's taking me forever to get through the Shack. My attention span combined with CONSTANT interruptions sure makes reading hard. :o)

Rebecca Conduff Aguirre said...

Oh, rats...but then you wouldn't want to be SO crazy busy that you can't even think! I think it's definitely a class that they should offer there every year, it's such a powerful thing! I haven't yet ordered the Losses book, but I would like to get that one and the workbook to explore this more.

Are you enjoying The Shack? I really liked it and then I gave it away to a friend! hmm...I'll get another book one of these days...

Ellie said...

I like that letter at the end. I'm blessed in that I have someone who has now for four years done just that - walked with me. No sympathy, no answers, no pushing - put up with my anger to try to push them away, my distrust, my needings, my failings, and has just calmly walked with me saying simply, "I'm here." and blessing me.
And today,... I went and got hurt by something they said... I know they didn't mean it as I took it, but I was hurt... and now I feel bad... I should have given a small portion of the grace and love that has been poured out on me for four years.
What makes me feel bad is that I know that tomorrow morning, they will be there, calm, steady, and loving me - because they don't love me because of what I do or who I am, but simply because of who they are. They chose to love me, and they do.