I can’t claim I’ve never caused harms. Can you? It seems to be a condition of being alive. What I can claim is that I’ve never caused a harm that can’t be mended. Almost all breaks, bruises, broken promises and broken hearts can mend with a willingness to acknowledge them, accept responsibility for them, and find the conditions that bring peace and healing.
I don’t know if there is an infinite number of types of harms, but I can name a few that I’ve witnessed, caused, or experienced:
~Causing myself to live in fear and poverty by not being self-supporting
~Causing myself to live in fear that I wouldn’t take care of my retirement needs
~Taking too few risks on life adventures
~Silence when communication would have helped
~Unwilling to acknowledge dreams and pursue them
~Saving for a dream vacation, then spending it on some emergency
~Unwilling to speak up or take risks for fear that it might cause harm to others.
There are also the standards: unpaid debts, uncared-for cars and homes, dishonesty, being unnecessarily harsh in communications, putting money ahead of relationship.
Harms happen and they can be undone. When we take on the process of mending old and new harms, it is life-changing, freeing, uplifting, and sometimes even exciting. And it can be a little uncomfortable and scary.
I’ve been mending harms for a long time and I don’t have it do it much anymore. When I do, I have a prayer that helps remind me that I’m human:
Willingness to tell the truth,
Courage to act,
Strength to change,
And grace to stand tall. Please.
You can find other prayers in my newest book, Your Life Is Your Prayer