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What are the passions?
"The passions are the feelings, the emotions or the movement of the sensible appetite--natural components of human psychology--which incline a person to act or not act in view of what is perceived as good or evil. The principle passions are love and hatred, desire and fear, joy, sadness, and anger."
(Compendium CCC, 370. Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 2006) The Compendioum's source on this topic is the teaching of St. Thomas Aquinas.
Forget that it's June. In Part 1, I challenged you to take an honest inventory of the people you "mother" to the detriment of cultivating healthy relationships.
As a result of child abuse, I'd developed a controlling and critical attitude--my way of coping with the sense of powerlessness that continued into adulthood. Healing required me to recognize it, confess it, and adopt a new mind-set.
Simple, but not easy. You have to want it badly. You have to continue in that trajectory when you feel like giving up. It takes time. I had to be willing to consider my reactions to the people around me--my reactions were broken.
But there's two sides to this coin of reaction to abuse. A friend comments:
"Been down this road. Have the scars and the smiles to prove it. Dysfunction finds its own. The first ten years of my marriage were the WORST. The last nearly ten have gradually improved for us both. God is so good!
Learning to hold my tongue was the opposite of my problem. My husband was the belittler and quick to point out real or perceived slights. I had to trust God for the courage to speak up in honesty, and not back down about the abuse in my marriage.
It was the hardest thing I ever did, but gradually I got better at it. God honored the honesty without rancor. My husband is a different man, in large part because I opened my mouth.
I realize I'm different from most women in this respect. I see it all the time, passive anger, the criticism in public. It's so painful. My problem was no less deadly to my marriage, though."
Healing required me to close my mouth. My friend's healing required her to open her mouth. We both had to recoginize it, confess it, and adopt a new mind-set. God acted on our behalf.
No matter the side of the coin you're on, you can heal. Let God heal you on the inside and you'll be amazed at what will change on the outside.
*Special note: If you are currently in an abusive relationship, if you or your children are in physical danger, this blog is not a call to "stay put and pray." Get to a safe place as quickly as possible.
The National Hotline for Domestic Violence:
1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or www.thehotline.org
Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline:
1-800-4-A-CHILD or www.childhelp.org
Published on Tuesday, June 7, 2011 @ 10:51 AM CDT