12 days ago (only TWELVE?!) I began a new position working for a non-profit organization. Basically, I'm working with homeless individuals and people at risk of homelessness to help them attain permanent, safe housing. There are a lot of other factors in the mix for the people I'm working with and this agency I work for is truly amazing.
Every day I stand in awe of my colleagues; their compassion, strength, wisdom, capability.... I have so much to learn.
So, I hear my father's voice a lot as I'm working. My dad would not have thought me being a counselor was a hot idea; this man who spent his life trying to enclose me in bubble wrap and protect me from reality. This would make him roll in his grave as much as the tattoo I got a month ago. (A story for another day.) My dad used to say, "Why do you want to get mixed up in other people's problems?"
I don't want to get mixed up, but respond. How can we walk through this world with blinders on, ignoring the world we live in and act as if we are all living in a vacuum not impacting one another.
There but by the grace of God, go I.
I am reminded of this song...
Most of all, like the song mentions I have a heart for this work. I do not believe I can save the world, nor do I think that I should.
What I realized today is that it is alright for my heart to be broken by what I see and experience. I was doubting myself because it was breaking. I don't break down and sob in front of people (well, not the clients, anyway) but my heart aches for the pain I see, and I am moved. I am moved to learn and grow and always do my very best; to meet people where they are, to encourage and assist and treat each person with the dignity and compassion that we all deserve because we all are humans, uniquely and wonderfully made.