I’ve met Jesus many times.
Each time he had a different face, sometimes he was short, sometimes tall. His skin tone varied and he talked with different accents. I think he may have been female at least once.
On one occasion I was present when he met himself. Happily, they both got along fine!
That’s the thing about being a mental health nurse. You get to meet Jesus every now and then.
Each time this happens, there’s an old cultural pressure to humour him whilst theorising about why he’s saying what he’s saying, to attempt to understand what’s really going on for him, and to form a plan of action about how to get him back to reality.
A common conversation amongst mental health nurses is about what would happen if the actual Jesus really did show up in hospital! How would we know? How would he be treated? What miracles might he perform that could be recognised as such and therefore lead to us questioning our disbelief?
The thing is, why does it matter? Why not simply accept his reality and treat him with the respect and honour deserving of a deity incarnate? What difference does it make?
In actual fact, in amongst the humouring, theorising, planning and acting, this has generally been what I and my colleagues have eventually settled on doing whenever meeting Jesus anyway, for as long as he’s asked us to, then when he inevitably changes we’ve adapted our language accordingly.
I think next time I meet Jesus I’ll notice a difference in myself.
I’ve increasingly let go of my need to know why he might be saying what he’s saying, to disbelieve, to theorize, to think about how to get him back to ‘reality’, to understand anything, and to conform to the old cultural pressure.
I’ve replaced these habits with an unshakeable belief in everyone’s capacity to achieve whatever they hope for, and a deep love and respect for everyone I’m honoured to meet, in harmony with a new emerging culture.
The conversation I’ll have might not be hugely different, but I have a hunch that it’ll be more direct and consistently useful, because I’ll be putting aside the barriers and maintaining the catalysts for inevitable change and adaptation.
The result may well seem miraculous!
2 thoughts on “Letting Go”
Thanks for sharing this Chris.
Reading this is so helpful In my work I am constantly listening to people trying to understand whereas getting on and letting go would be more useful in my opinion.
It’s hard though, in supervision my supervisees best hopes are often ‘to understand’ and they come from a background where understanding makes the difference they are looking for. It’s not dangerous or harmful to understand so I respectfully go along with it. For me it’s not the most efficient way of being helpful. Evan George talked about ‘not being clever ‘ in his blog and that’s what I strive for. It’s the clients or supervisees task to reach their best hopes, not mine. I can guide my supervisees and not always take them with me in my SFWorld.
Have a great day
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Thanks Carolyn. It is hard. We’re all on our own journey. We all find our own way. Simply walking alongside someone for a while, matching their pace, staying one step behind them, guiding them only in as much as asking them about the direction they wish to go, then allowing them to decide. Inviting them only in as much as to invite them to notice the difference it makes for them to try different routes and find their own short cuts, to discover their own efficiency. To do this whilst leaving opinions behind. I find that can really make a difference.
You have a great day too 🙂
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