It happened again. I wanted to say, “Oh, you need Jesus.”
My partner might say I’ve been Jesus-juking myself.
This experience leaves me very confused every time.
See I work in an environment where faith and spirituality in general are regarded in some intellectual curiosity so long as the faith is properly sterilized for clinical practice. If a consumer professes a belief system, we accept it as part of their internal self-care and recognize it to be as legitimate as the consumer makes it.
Amongst us providers, faith and spirituality must take on an even more sterile and intellectual dynamic. If it is spoken of(and I stress the IF), it is spoken of in passing and given the same value as a recreational pursuit.
And honestly I’m fine with that most of the time.
I like being in an environment where people talk about all sorts of things and not just what they read in spiritual text that morning or what their spiritual teacher taught them the previous holy day. I like talking about thoughts and feelings and physical health and theories and practices and politics and all the real world factors that make up addictions and mental illness.
I like addressing all of it. Fixing the body, the mind, the emotions, the relationships, the legal issue. Still not crazy about housing, but I’m getting better.
I like saying to myself and others that I’m addressing people’s real needs, or at least the ones they perceive as real. Meeting people where they’re at. Being relevant. Being real. Hands on. Not all caught up in religious mumbo-jumbo and clichés that the post-modern world doesn’t understand anyway.
I like being the guy who understands the language of spiritual people but has appropriately distanced himself from it. Put it in it’s proper place. Adopted methods of treating people that actually treat them. I am an holistic healer that addresses all aspects of a person.
Only, if I’m honest with myself, I don’t address the whole person. I don’t really address the spiritual, except with those few for whom it is already a core part of their lives. Even then, I take the sterile approach and reflect back to them what they believe and any inconsistencies I see.
But I can’t help the fact that I am from the spiritual community as much as I’m from the humanist and queer communities. I do believe in God and that will never change. I do pray to Jesus and even though I do it from the Lotus position, the Name will never change. I see people as created beings, possessing great dignity and value and incredible redemptive potential.
Provided they have right relationships with their people and their God. I’d say Higher Power but I really hate that term.
So I don’t know what to do.
Up until now, I’ve been content to be the queer spiritual humanist and just not talk about my faith. But lately, I’ve been feeling the most peculiar thing. I think it’s dissatisfaction, or maybe a longing to actually give voice to my beliefs.
This is not legal at my work place.
This is also not who I am! (Or so I tell myself) I’ve had really mixed and miserable experiences with evangelists and radical Christians. I really don’t want to be anything like them.
But I’ve gotta say something. I feel it welling up from deep inside like a burning fire.
Maybe I can be the one to speak after listening, then listen some more. Maybe I can speak but not persuade with judgment. Maybe I can ask questions instead and invite people to explore a greater Truth…