The Thirty Minute Blogger

Exploring Books and the Writer's Life, Faith and Works, Culture and Pop Culture, Space Science and Science Fiction, Technology and Nostalgia, Parenting and Childhood, Health: Physical and Emotional ... All Under the Iron Hands of the Clock and That 30 Minute Deadline

Friday, July 27, 2012

Good News from Christianity: Caring for Each Other


Care is something other than cure. Cure means "change."  A doctor, a lawyer, a minister, a social worker--they all want to use their professional skills to bring about changes in people's lives. They get paid for whatever kind of cure they can bring about. But cure, desirable as it may be, can easily become violent, manipulative, and even destructive if it does not grow out of care. Care is being with, crying out with, suffering with, feeling with. Care is compassion. It is claiming the truth that the other person is my brother or sister, human, mortal, vulnerable, like I am. 

When care is our first concern, cure can be received as a gift. Often we are not able to cure, but we are always able to care. To care is to be human.

Henri J.M. Nouwen. Bread for the Journey: A Daybook of Wisdom and Faith

It seems to me that Henri has put his finger on something quite vital. Those whom we actively care for, we can help in one way or another, no matter how deficient we feel to meet the challenge. Through active caring we can improve our small corner of the world. We see all too much of the attempted curing that turns violent, manipulative, or destructive, which comes from a lack of caring for others. That is all around us today. That forceful cure has driven many people away from Christianity, often hurt, wounded, and vowing never to return. To those of you who are in this boat, I want to extend my personal apology for how shabbily you were treated by someone who did not truly care.

Who will you care for today?


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