Poems, Personal Stories, and Observations

Posts tagged ‘forgive’

Mental Health Awareness Month

This is the last day of May, which is Mental Health Awareness Month.  Below are a few of my posts related to mental health, from Facebook.


5/18/2019:

In one town in recent travels, we saw a disturbing sight while sitting at an outdoor cafe. We had a party of about 14 people.

While eating, a man approached who was either mentally unbalanced or high on something, or both. There was a low metal fence between us and him, and he stood across from one of the tables and just stared at us. His pants were sunk too low, to put it kindly. Eventually I approached him with a gift card to a restaurant and said, “Could you use this?” He answered, I’m afraid of that,” but accepted it.

My daughter says that, working with homeless ministries, they don’t necessarily try to converse with such people, but would definitely give them food or clothes, etc., if wanted.

People like this used to be “institutionalized”, sometimes perhaps against their will. What are people’s thoughts on how to help them, if they can be helped?

I told this story to a mental health professional, and he surmised that the man suffers from paranoid schizophrenia. Imagine being afraid to ask people for what you need! Pray for the mentally ill!


5/24/2019:

[I recommend reading] the [book] “The Hiding Place”, by and about Corrie ten Boom. After WWII, she was able to forgive a Nazi officer (face to face) who had mistreated her in a concentration camp. That was through God’s grace, because her human emotions rebelled against forgiving him. But God gave her the power to forgive the man.  (Apparently he was repentant as well, though it’s not clear in the story.)


5/29/2019

I read somewhere, something to the effect that believing one cannot be forgiven by God or others, or being unable to forgive, can be a big factor in mental illness. Makes sense; I think I would go mad if I believed I [couldn’t] be forgiven.

Spiritually speaking, when we receive the grace of forgiveness from God, we won’t be so tied to those people who won’t forgive us, seeking their approval.  [And, when we forgive, we are freed from the same unhealthy “attachments”.]

[A book by a “forgiveness therapist:]
The Forgiving Life


Besides the Facebook posts, here is an article about forgiveness, which mentions forgiveness “expert” Everett Worthington:
Setting Captives Free: Forgiveness and Freedom

The Fates of War

I was once your enemy;
The fates of war
Placed us on opp’site sides —
We had our pride.

We had a cause,
We gave not pause –
Our cause was just –
To fight we must.

Sure those in power
Were not always right,
But many focused
For loved ones to fight.

The many fallen,
The dead, the suffering,
The broken hearts,
The shrapnel puncturing …

The refugees,
The enemy aliens,
The lost, the forgotten;
The orphans taken in.

And then it ends;
We pick up the pieces.
We must forgive,
Or hatred increases.

In the end, the good will win,
Despite our many, varied sins.
And in every conflict, however grave,
If we want the same, we must forgive.

(Memorial Day, 2016)

Come Down, Come Down

Come down, come down, Lord Jesus,
And feed your hungry sheep.

Come down, come down, oh Father,
Bring water from the deep.

Come down, oh Holy Spirit,
Refresh our weary souls.

Come down to earth,
And give new birth,
Let sin and sadness
Transform to gladness.

Cast doubt and fear
Away from here.

Let dark deeds die
And hatred lie
Lifeless
And defeated.

Lift up our souls
And take control.
Forgive our sins;
Bring life within.

Let parch-ed tongues
Your wine imbibe —
Refreshing pools
Bring on the cool
Of souls made bright
Within Your light.

The Wanderer

Lost in the desert,
Mouth parched and dry,
Wandering always,
Wondering why.

Shadows approaching;
Must keep at bay —
Walk toward the sunlight;
On the path stay.

Desperate searching,
Cold from the chill.
Is all this wandering
Really Your will?

Increase my faith,
My sins forgive.
Make my path straight,
So I can live.

On the Wrong Side

(Reflections on D-Day and other conflicts)

What happens when
You’re on the wrong side,
Through no fault of your own? —
You didn’t ask to be born.

What happens when
You’re one black among whites
Or one white among blacks?

What happens when
Your skin’s another color,
Your religion is different,
Or you’re the former enemy?

Peace has been declared,
But it takes take time
For hatred not to flare.

I’m on the wrong side sometimes,
But I have to live.
Please give me a chance.

Don’t judge me by labels
And prejudiced fables.
Though some may be true,
I’m a person too.

And I, too, must learn
To open my heart,
To make a new start.

To open my mind,
To learn to be kind,
Though we might disagree —
We need to be free.

To see you as special
Would really be helpful.
To see your great worth —
It really can’t hurt.

To learn to forgive,
That’s how we must live.

(June 6, 2014 – 70th anniversary of D-Day, World War II)

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