Today I FINALLY created my FIRST layout of 2010! Pretty sad considering I usually have about 30 done by March! This one was inspired by Challenge #4 over at Dirty Scraps. http://dirtscraps.blogspot.com The challenge is to focus on how others see you.
My journaling reads: I volunteer as a small group leader at Celebrate Recovery, a Christian-based 12-step program. This is a serious role. Sometimes I forget how serious it is. We deal with all kinds of people in Recovery. Alcoholics, sex addicts, drug addicts, co-dependants and depressed to name a few. There are others who struggle with eating disorders, over-spending, over-achieving, people-pleasing, anger, rejection, loneliness, divorce, loss and hopelessness.
I can hardly believe that God is using me to reach out to these people. We are all so different. Many of these ladies I would never have had the opportunity to get to know in any other aspect of my life. But here we all are, every Friday night, sharing our hearts, our hurts, our habits and our hang-ups with each other. We support one another and in the common bond of great hurts we have developed a love one another.
I am so proud of these ladies for taking steps to improve their lives, their marriages, their situations. It took me a lot of years of sliding down a slippery slope before I decided to dry my tears and climb back up. I know the courage and the fear each of these ladies possess. I've been there.
I often get comments on how God is using me to minister to these ladies, how well I can relate to them or how gentle I am with their hearts. I am only being me. And I certainly am not doing it alone. I pray constantly that God will give me the words, the strength, the understanding, to help these ladies feel welcome and open to share. I know from my own experience that sharing my pain is a huge part of what healed me, so I pray that I can encourage them, give them hope and show them there is healing in the path they are now on if they choose to have it.
I am so humbled by the knowledge of God and the spiritual connection some of these ladies have. I am humbled by their strength to come forward and share their deepest secrets with me. I am humbled that they look up to me in any way. I just don't feel I am one they should be looking up to. But I do know that I would not trade this experience for anything. It has made me always ask myself, "what might that person be going through" and has helped me to stop passing judgement on what I don't know. And I have gotten to know and love some wonderfully strong women! For that I am grateful. - March 06, 2010