Purpose Group Week Two

Where you go, I will go

Naomi was an Israelite woman, living in the land of Moab. She was a widow and had two sons, each married to a Moabite. One son died, then the other, and Naomi urged her daughters-in-law to return to their own family homes. Orpah did, but Ruth chose to stay with Naomi. She accompanied her mother-in-law to as she returned to her homeland and the protection of her own relatives. This is a beautiful story of love and devotion, of two lives interwoven, and of how God blesses each of them.

Three Pivotal People

One exercise this past week was to choose three people who had a strong positive influence on us, then write a letter to one of them. I had four people; my sister; an elementary school teacher; a friend I met in grade 7 and a friend I met in grade 11.

I was deeply moved by the woman in our group who chose her parents. She is in her 30s which means her parents are in their 50s. She grew up with loving supportive parents who encouraged each of their children to be their best selves, without trying to compare, change or shape them. Now, her parents are her closest friends.

One woman shared about the profound influence of her grandfather’s unconditional love, and his daily prayers for his grandchildren. God, prayer and Bible study were the cornerstone of her grandparents’ life. Another woman talked about a friend she met some ten years ago, who mentored her, prayed for her (and still does) and who cares, listens and supports her in ways that sustain her and encourage her to be all that she can be.

My letter was to my childhood friend. I thanked her for loving me and accepting me for who I was. I told her how much it meant to me, coming over to her house, being welcomed and affirmed by her parents. I felt safe and comfortable at her home. Now I understand why it meant so much to me at a time when my own home could be a place of uncertainty.

Role Playing

We talked about the Trinity and our understanding of God as Father, Son and Holy Spirit. I don’t truly understand it, but I believe it, by faith. I am comfortable accepting what I don’t know.

We paired up to talk about our experiences with a role we play in life that is a difficult one for us. My partner described her challenges as the youngest of five daughters. I talked about my brief but painful and difficult marriage to a drug-addicted bi-polar man.

As a group, we each talked about the results of our Strengths test (here’s a link to the site with an overview http://www.viacharacter.org/www/Character-Strengths/VIA-Classification – the test is free).There were some surprises at the results and we agreed that we would answer a few questions differently, based on the situation. One of our goals, in this group, is to determine how to work to our strengths in the context of our life roles. In the week ahead, we will be examining our habits and thought patterns as part of the process.

It is important to focus on our strengths and work on building them up. It’s also important to understand how qualities or traits we lack can impact our lives. Food for more thought…

Tonight we will be discussing our values, our motives, our abilities and our fears…

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About verawrites

Progress not perfection - that's my goal. Live and learn - that's my motto. I like to share bits of wisdom and glimmers of insight gleaned on my life journey of 50+ years. My hope is to encourage, perhaps inspire, fellow journeyers. Each of us has something to share. Let's be generous, gracious and compassionate with one another. I am blessed to be a blessing... so are you!
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4 Responses to Purpose Group Week Two

  1. bethbyrnes says:

    Vera, this sounds so life reinforcing — a wonderful programme, it appears. I would probably have chosen my parents and my maternal grandparents. Also, my Aunt Kate who is doing very poorly right now. I am almost afraid to take that test, for fear of the results. Thank you for taking us along on this reverent journey.

    • verawrites says:

      It is an amazing course/group! Andrea is very effective leader -she listens well and allows us to express ourselves freely, and shares her own stuff. The four of us in the group are very different but somehow we feel safe to be vulnerable. It’s a precious thing and many people never experience it. Man Christians are uncomfortable with pain, we say ‘there, there’, murmur a word or two, then turn away. I think it’s because they are afraid to get in touch with their own pain (Pandora’s box syndrome).

      You are blessed, Beth, to have deep real close connections to your family members, and that you can relate to in healthy ways. It’s precious gift which I know you treasure. If you do take the test, I’d be interested to hear your reaction to the results. I’m going to retake it later, to see if there are any changes.

  2. bethbyrnes says:

    OK, I took it! Fun. I will email you. I think it was pretty accurate.

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