Day 347 - The Gift
Three ways to receive a gift:
With resentment for the wrapping
With discipline, to take off that hateful wrapping
With love, to see under the wrapping
When I first took my son to get help from his peers, I was terrified. Help was at a church that donated their space to the group, but all I could see was that it was a Christian place and I was afraid that what had happened to me at the hands of the Christians would happen to my son. But my son wasn't 8 years old and he could protect himself, and I was there to protect him as well. Still, I was afraid and I resented having to put myself and my son at risk.
But even though the setting was hateful to me, I could see the benefits to my son and I was determined to face down my hate and fear as long as it helped him.
That went on for a long time. One day I realized I was no longer afraid for him or myself. The Christians were just people now, misguided and sheeplike people, but just people. They didn't hate me, either. They saw past the differences to the pain inside and responded to that in ways that led to my own ability to see past that hateful wrapping to the good underneath.
Now, in my own standoffish way, I love those people. I see them as people and not as monsters as I did before. I learned to see past my fear and to accept the gift they offered. I learned to receive the gift.