Lord make me an instrument of your peace. Where there is Hatred let me sow Love; where there is Injury, Pardon; where there is Doubt, Faith; where there is Despair, Hope; where there is Darkness, Light. O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be Consoled, as to Console; not so much to be Understood as to Understand; to be Loved as to Love. St. Francis
We hold a crying baby to our shoulders and gently rub its back while whispering softly in its ear. We embrace an adult, communicating care with meaningful words or silence. We bring calm to a chaotic room by speaking truthfully with our demeanor conveying a less anxious presence. In short, we console one another with our words and actions.
At other times we are the ones needing to be held, needing to hear words of comfort and assurance, needing to have our anxiety reduced. We seek, desire, and require consolation, someone telling us “it will be all right,” “I will be here with you,” ”I’m not going anywhere.”
During this pandemic, the giving and receiving of comfort is extremely challenging. How can we give our care without endangering one another? How can we share the warmth of an embrace while social distancing? How can we experience the value of a smile when the mask hides it?
Consoling others and accepting it in return from them may be more difficult today, and for the immediate future, but it is not impossible. At this time more words will need to be used, “care” gifts appropriate to what’s happening need to be sent, and prayer petitions lifting concerns need to be offered. With our creativity challenged we console one another. We virtually hold each other in our embrace, we “smile” our love to each other mask or not, we flood heaven with prayers of thanks or requests for help. We continue to give and receive always tipping the scales to more consoling than being consoled.
Who needs to hear words of support from you today? Who may be sending those words to you?
Prayer: Use me today O Lord to speak your care and love to others. Amen.
Tomorrow: Leading with Understanding