by Dawn Lawless
Be intentional, be mindful, be authentic, be true, be, be, be, be…
BUT I DON’T WANNA BE…
As a reformed rebel (still in process), this mind set of nonconformity has painfully led to me “hitting bottom” more times than I’d like to admit. Reflecting on some of my history actually makes me cringe, but as a survivor, I own these struggles. They are unique to my story, and I find comfort in knowing that God was INTENTIONAL when he allowed me to suffer.
GET THIS…He DID NOT cause my suffering; he allowed it. He knew when I toured the terrain of independence I would learn to depend on him, so he allowed me to suffer natural consequences for MY choices. For this, I am grateful.
Each month our counseling center selects a Christ-like theme to focus our attention. These themes are designed with transformative power to provoke personal change that will ultimately lead to healthier families and a healthier community. #bethechange
BE INTENTIONAL is our June theme. It is instructional by nature; it is a verb, and it calls us to set accomplishable goals on a daily basis. As one whose tank fills up when the lists are marked off, I love the attributes of this theme, but I wonder if it is enough…
I DON’T THINK SO. In John 6:26-29, Jesus teaches his followers to reach beyond the surface to a deeper level of intentionality. He calls them to be intentional, not just in their actions, but in their hearts and their minds.
26Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, you are looking for me, not because you saw miraculous signs, but because you ate the loaves and had your fill. 27Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. On him God the Father has placed his seal of approval.” 28Then they asked him, “What must we do to do the works God requires?” 29Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”
WOW! Jesus admonishes their anxieties about the daily tasks (getting food), and instead, encourages them to simply believe…To believe in the one He (The Father) has sent.
This passage encourages us to see beyond our limited perspective, and to focus not on our physical needs, but on Him, and Him alone. He loves us and knows our needs, and he is calling us to be intentional beyond our daily, physical needs. Jesus is calling us to change our perspective-our mind set-our beliefs. He’s asking us to trust His will for our lives, so we can experience the fullness of spiritual freedom with an eternal perspective.
I challenge you to be intentional with your thoughts this month. Meditate on these verses, and experience God’s transforming love through his gift of freedom. Philipians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” and Matthew 6:33 “But seek first His Kingdom and his righteous, and all these things will be given you as well.”
CALL TO ACTION
Stop the stigma of mental illness by supporting our efforts. Your input matters! If this were cancer, you wouldn’t just say, “Get over it!” Be a trend-setter, and make a difference by taking these few action steps toward a healthier community.
***To get involved and learn how you can BE THE CHANGE this year, contact us at charlotte@counselingconnect ions.org.
To connect with Dawn Lawless, LCSW, LSOTP directly, email her at email@example.com