Making Connections November 4, 2014
One night after attending a weekly therapy group at Good Samaritan Ministries in Beaverton, I spent two hours helping a friend help someone else with their car (I originally wanted to go get coffee). The battery cable clamp corroded off. Duct tape and zip ties did not hold the clamp to the battery post for long, the car stalled in 50 feet. My friend and I pushed the car into a parking spot and, graciously, another person had stayed to offer the one with the broken down car a ride home.
We were all going to go our separate ways when my friend and I decided to offer to go get the part needed and fix it. We went to Chevron, then 7 Eleven, then Fred Meyers, and finally found the part needed. On the way into Fred Meyers, I noticed Starbucks was open and asked my friend if he wanted to go ahead and get a coffee. He said “no” in so many words, which was a good thing, for when we returned we had found the other people waiting with the car until we got back. After a time of turning and twisting, the corroded bolt was off and the new clamp on. The vehicle was once again connected and functional. What was meant for me to be an evening of coffee with one other soul, turned into an evening where a group of four people each longed for a similar result.
When I go to group at Good Samaritan Ministries, it’s like that. Sometimes I sit and silently sip on what is percolating. Other times I work on cleaning away those things that corrode my sense of connection to God and the world around me. Some nights are duct tape and zip-tie nights. Some nights there is a “wise word,” a strong connection. One night, I was able to cry and release pieces of anguish and hurt, anger and pain and receive grace, love and support. All I could say was, “Thank you. Thank you.”
I think we are all longing for connection experiences. Keep coming. You never know when your night might be. God and group happens in mysterious ways, and when you least expect, as long as you there, you may get the help you need to experience what Bettie calls “breakthrough,” what I will call connecting.
By Daniel Kenneth