The Gift and the Task

The Gift and the Task


At the end of September a doctoral student finished his dissertation on alternative styles of counseling. One section was entitled,”The Peter Pan Method,” and I was the one he wrote about.  He is soon to publish this in a journal.  This raised many issues for me because he summarized the style as:

“The Peter Pan Method is having the ability to let adolescents enter one’s life without fear, and with equality.  This Method is one in which you become one with them in their world. It is effective because you meet them as equals.”

As I became ill and the fever raged at night I would see myself as never growing up. It was reinforced by adults who would email or say things to me. Their comments of me being “immature”, “a child” hurt, and tore me a part.

I do feel more comfortable in that world, I know it, I understand it, and I feel the loneliness, the pain, that is  a part of that world.

But as I reflect more and more I remember the many I have known,loved, walked with, and buried; I hear from those with kids remembering “hanging with River,” and I realize that this is a gift. A gift that carries with it risk, pain, and rejection; a gift that is life giving. 

It is a task of being faithful to that gift.

In the days before my ordination I was given a lot of psychological tests, and one of the comments was that ministry on the “edge” would be where I would function best.  And that is the way I have chosen to live on the edge. I grow, I change, but in the words of a song from the movie Point Break:

“Life on the edge to I touch the great divide.  I choose to live life on the edge till the day I die.”

This is where I choose to live.  And for me it is the most fulfilling way to live.

J. Philip Newell writes “Redemption is the journey of being reconnected to the light of God within.  It is a journey home that takes us through what seems like unknown land.

Redemption is not the bringing of light to a creation that is essentially dark, but rather the liberating of light from the heart of life.”

So in this New Year as we continue our journey in “liberating of light from the heart of life.” we asked that you join us by your giving from the bottom of your heart.  Ninety eight per cent of your money goes directly to our work.

Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!


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