I cannot imagine going through the rough spots in my life without key people that were there for me. At times these people were one’s I didn’t realize we close. Times of crisis reveal. These times reveal who our true friends are. These moments of revelation bring to the surface the truth about our lives, how we have lived, and what may be missing. Have you had a time where no one showed up – or you had no one to call? I sure have – and it lit a fire in me for what I was missing.
My hope and prayer for you is that you find yourself in these inevitable moments and are in awe at the support and friendships that are present. Don’t do marriage without help. Know that parenting was never meant to be a solo sport. Reach out for help as needed. Band together with others and be a support for them in areas you are strong in – and allow them to be support with their strengths. This is a beautiful picture of God’s perfect design in humanity. If we are not careful we see and hear about the dark side of mankind and we pull away and are less likely to build those lifelines that can save us in difficult times.
Sickness – In life, sickness will come. For some it may be life threatening, or nearly so. For some of us it may be a child. We need one another in these difficult times. Reach out for help, Ask! Be that friend for another in a time of sickness.
Parenting – This is an impossible task. It is all an experiment. Listen to others that have gone before you. Reach out for help. Never do this alone. Find groups to be a part of that help you as a parent, community groups, church groups, support groups, or something like this. Band together with like-minded friends. My personal focus is on raising your children in a Biblical Sexual Ethic. Others have their strengths. Band together. Reach out to others in need and be available to them.
Conflict in Marriage – This is potentially an impossible crossroads for so many couples. Get help. Know there is hope. Find the beautiful gift of forgiveness – freedom in vulnerability – clarity in healthy relationships. Marriage is meant to be a sacrament. Hold it up as such – sacred. Get help in difficult times in your marriage. Be an example to others as well.
Loss – Life gets hard. We have losses that impact our lives forever – and we are never the same. Surviving these incredibly difficult times has immeasurable hope when in community.
We live – and we potentially die based off of our community. Don’t go it alone. I love what I do – and am incredibly humbled by families and couples that invite me into their stories to help them navigate rough waters. Build community. Be community. Find community. Be hope!
Corey Gilbert, PhD, LPC