She performs even the most menial task with a grace that transforms it into an act of love. Her tireless efforts make Dad’s last days not only bearable, but blessed. Truly she is a sister to be proud of!
Return with me one final time to the three questions that the psychiatrist asks each of his new clients. 1) What is the worst thing you have ever done? 2) What is the worst thing that ever happened to you? 3) What is the proudest moment of your life? Since we’ve already addressed the first two questions in previous blogs let’s turn our attention to the final question: “What is the proudest moment of your life?”
When I think of my proudest moment several memories come to mind. I call them, “Kodiak Moments.” In the first, it is Christmas season and I see Brenda (my wife) standing in the check-out line at the Walmart in Fayetteville, Arkansas. She greets the woman in front of her – an elderly lady of indiscriminate age, attired in stylish but well worn clothes – and they chit chat as they work their way toward the cash register. In a moment of vulnerability the lady confides to Brenda. “I hope I’ve added right. I only have $15 and I’m afraid my groceries will come to more than that.”Category: March 2009
Return with me to the psychiatrist who asks each of his new clients three questions. 1) What is the worst thing you have ever done? 2) What is the worst thing that ever happened to you? 3) What is the proudest moment of your life? Today we are going to consider question number two – “What is the worst thing that ever happened to you?”
Of the three questions, I find this one the most difficult. Not because nothing bad has ever happened to me, but that the disappointments and hurts I’ve suffered seem rather inconsequential when viewed in light of the things others have experienced. What is the disappointment of having a manuscript you’ve labored over for months repeatedly rejected compared to the devastation of divorce? Once I was “fired” from my position as associate pastor, several times I candidated for churches only to have the congregation call another candidate, but what is that compared to having a child in prison or addicted to drugs?
Death is about as bad as it gets, but there are deaths and then there are “deaths.” The death of a beloved parent or a dear friend – both of which I have experienced – is a grievous loss, but it pales in comparison to watching helplessly as your six- year-old son loses his life to the ravages of leukemia. That’s what happened to Randy and Vicky and it just about killed them. Another dear friend lost his young wife and the mother of his four children to cancer. In the ensuing weeks he nearly lost his mind as he tried to come to grips with the reality of life without her.Category: March 2009
I recently read about a psychiatrist who asks each new client three questions. 1) What is the worst thing you have ever done? 2) What is the worst thing that ever happened to you? 3) What is the proudest moment of your life?
If you are like me you would probably like to skip over the first two questions and go right to the third one. All of us like to remember our achievements, those bright and shining moments when we outdid ourselves. Yet, for many of us, even those highlights are tainted with the shame of past sins or the pain caused by some unspeakable tragedy. Many of us cannot accept our achievements because we are haunted with the thought that if others knew the whole truth about us they would know what a phony we are. Maybe that’s why that psychiatrist wants his clients to remember the worst. Maybe he realizes we can’t really accept our achievements until we have made peace with our past.
If that’s the case, then the first step is to come to grips with our past – both the evil we have done and the evil we have suffered. No one likes to remember their sins but we must if we ever hope to be rid of them. Pretending they didn’t happen is futile.Category: March 2009