Though our relationships affect us all profoundly few of us are aware of how much they do. We easily turn to a consumer mindset, a more functional side of life and our face to face connections get given very little of our time. We may say our relationships are important, but in reality, if we realise where our priorities are, we soon see what we really believe.
Continue reading Singing the same old tune?
We can quickly notice if a plant is not thriving, if it’s not getting the nourishment and moisture that it needs to grow. However, like with our own relational growth, we can’t actually see it growing. We may only realise that something is amiss when the plant turns yellow and the leaves flop over.
We are needing to become more cognizant of what’s happening in our own growth and to become aware of how we either give or take life. We all utter and receive words daily as we try to connect with others. Continue reading Life-Giving Words
We are never static relationally. Relationships are so infused within everything we do that we tend not to notice what’s really happening within them. Over time though, our tendencies become evident and we see whether we have been life-giving or not.
Our lives are not passive, like journeying in a train. They are more like being in a car where we can’t take our hands off the wheel. We need to be aware of all that’s happening around us as we go. Continue reading Giving Life with Our Words
The most important aspect of our being is our relationships. Like a fish in water, we can take them for granted and hardly notice their importance. However, relationships don’t just happen. As we’ve all experienced, without our nurture and work, they can wither and die. It’s up to us to be aware and to take responsibility for those we have in our lives.
Why do we stop engaging with others, with what is so important? We can easily miss out on a precious relationship through being over-stressed, over-busy, or too hurt.
It may help us to look at our relationship with something like beauty, which is the ‘water we all swim in’, and yet something we can also so easily miss. Continue reading Beauty, Our hearts’ yearning
Every person is in relation to other human beings. How people treated us taught us how to relate. We tend to take relationships for granted and to presume that they will always be there until we get hurt. In our busy lifestyles we can forget that in order for relationships to thrive they need to be nurtured.
As with the food we eat, we can get by on very basic nutrition. We’re not meant to simply survive on junk food. We all know what a specially-prepared meal does for us. It’s a delight for our senses, giving us joy and feeding us at more levels than simply physically.
Similarly, in order to be nourished by relationships, we need ongoing, intentional investment in them. Continue reading In connection we find life
At our deepest place of union we come to rest. Not needing to prove something or to explain ourselves, we can just be. Our journey to this point of connection with another does take risk, but it is here that we give our greatest gift – that of presence.
The space between us and others is never an empty one and if we are aware, we’ll increasingly become skilled at reading another’s presence. We’ll know when we are with someone who, say, has a heavy heart.
Continue reading “I pray that they will be one…”
In our mother’s womb, all of us were just ourselves, with no conditions. As adults, we continue to long to be received by others, just as we are. Since we’ve all been hurt by life, our place of intimacy is often an area of both great longing and deep anxiety.
Continue reading Growing in Intimacy
We are creatures that are made to give life. At every stage of our relating to others we are making choices which will either be creative and life-giving or destructive. The investment we make to create a positive, loving space is essential to our union with others.
Intimacy starts with us, for we can only be as connected with another as we are able to value and trust ourselves. We will not be able to respect or love others if we have a low estimate of our own worth. Life batters and bruises all of us, but we are meant to persist with bringing light and healing to the world. Intimacy is a hard-won reality, but it is very worthwhile. Continue reading Our Deepest Longing
If we picture ourselves as a house, we can imagine the different relational spaces as rooms we inhabit. Reflection on these can reveal how connected and how at home we really are in ourselves.
Within us may be areas that are full of light, while others may be closed off to ourselves and to others. These rooms are of differing sizes depending on the gravity we have given them. We may only occasionally feel able to show some of them to others. For example, what does the room of our body feel like? Are we satisfied and at peace, or are we carrying painful things in relation to our bodies? Continue reading Longing for Intimacy – Into Fear
Childhood perceptions of conflict affect us all our lives. Reflecting on them without judgement enables us to begin to see conflict as a friend.
All of us have a conflict history. The roots of our conflict come from our own experience of it. They started growing in utero when we sensed our mother’s heartbeat speed up as she faced things she struggled with. This continued into our childhood as we found ourselves wanting to be ‘this’ yet having to be ‘that’. Continue reading Is conflict a friend or foe?