Becoming Comfortable with the uncomfortable.
A foundational principle in the Befriender training. I would start there again. This is where real listening begins.
“Becoming comfortable with the uncomfortable” was the mantra. And Abraham is our teacher for the journey. Genesis is our beginning. Abraham in his old age left the comforts of Ur, called out, to begin a wandering in forming a new people.
Befrienders had to leave the comforts of their own stories and often the need to be in control, wanting to fix the problem. Instead all of us were to make room for the uncomfortable and comfortable stories of those hospitalized. Many of the stories involved grief. Sometimes the stories were from the past and sometimes they were from the present. The dynamic was incarnation as the words of others were given room in our flesh for a mirroring, and “the eye sees itself but by reflection.”
This is a continuing journey, the structure for listening is a descent/ascent, uncomfortable/comfortable. We have this in three locations at present: church, virus, and social justice. Gaining a tolerance for discomfort will be our continuing prayer and the learning curve to a greater truth. The fire of Pentecost can be purifying, as old elements are burnt off for a better outcome.
With social justice Andra Day says, “True Allyship Requires a Willingness to Be Uncomfortable.”
In the midst of nationwide protests over racism and police brutality, Day says that white people who want to be allies need to start questioning their thought processes
“People forget that racism — systemic racism, institutionalized racism, racial injustice and oppression — is a network. It’s a network of things happening at the same time in order to make you think the way you think and me think the way I think. Otherwise it doesn’t work,” she says. “You can’t only control the thoughts of the people being oppressed. You have to control the thoughts of the oppressor — whether they’re aware of it or not. So I think one of the first things [white people] can do is really start to question and undo some of the things that they think about people of color in this nation, about black people in this nation.”
Read in TIME: https://apple.news/ASi3D6H8lTz-XA9X6Jsvi8A