Freely Received, Freely Given


Kind Thoughts from a Friend

The text came from her in the early morning hours. Let’s call her Carissa, a name of Latin and Greek origin that translates as “beloved grace.”

Carissa and I had crossed paths several years ago. She had a deeply troubled history, and yet there was a light within her that shined brightly despite her addictions and heartache. Since then I have been a mentor of sorts.

Neither of us would say we understand our relationship, though the truth is all that matters is that it serves us both well. A measure of the quality of the connection is that her husband does not in any way begrudge our ongoing dialogue. That is rare, and commends them both greatly.

Most of our time in conversation is spent with me listening. While I do share in return, a great deal of the feedback goes to reassuring her that she is loveable despite her history. And I pass along tips and tools to aid her in her inner journey.

The basic dynamic is pretty simple. I pass along to Carissa that which has been given freely to me from mentors, teachers and councilors. It goes without saying that we have inwardly similar life challenges to overcome though we are quite different in externalities.

With that as context, here are Carissa’s words from that early morning text.

“I am so very thankful for your guidance, and yes I dare say your friendship. I woke up today with a sense of real gratitude in the awareness of the idea of heartache as a factor in my life. There’s a true feeling of relief that comes along with the recognition that those are the feelings to which I’m attached. Relief maybe that I’m not so negative as I am hesitant. Knowing I’m not alone and I’m understood, as to better understand, means that freedom exists. Freedom to sort things out and freedom to find a way to keep knowing who this Carissa might be. It’s just so cool to be safe and loved. Thank you to you and a few others too.”

Progress comes for her. Slowly and painstakingly. Stumbling along. Beloved grace. I am part of that journey. Stumbling along with her.

Seeing True

“I can’t do this without you,” my mentor said to me. So too were these words delivered from his mentor to him, and now from me to others.

Seeing True in Action

There is a great, ego-gratifying mischief in the world. It is the notion of the self-made man or woman. In truth, each of us is the product of countless contributions most of which were given freely.

Of course, we must do things for ourselves because no one can do them for us. But we cannot do it alone.

Make a list of all those who contributed to you and your life.

Have you thanked them? Have you passed it on? Do you acknowledge it?