Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Augustine Day by Day - August 10 - Let Friends Help Us

"For when we are harassed by poverty, saddened by bereavement, ill, or in pain, let good friends visit us. Let them be persons who not only can rejoice with those who rejoice but can weep with those who weep. Let them be persons who know how to give useful advice and how to win us to express our own feelings in conversation.

-- Letter 130, 2

Remarkably prescient psychiatry from Augustine. Tremendous psychological strength comes from hearing love as well as *being heard*. Go, hear the weak and wounded and abandoned! Even before you speak your little pearls of wisdom, *listen!* The weak are made better simply by knowing someone else knows they are hurting. Go to a hospital to listen to the sick. Go to an assisted living facility to listen to the old and forgotten. Go to an orphanage to listen to the hungry young souls. Go to your family, go to your lost friends, go, go, go, listen as God listens to us.

Prayer. O Lord, my God, pay heed to my prayer. Look with mercy on my desire, which is not concerned with myself alone but with my neighbor's good as well.

-- Confessions 11, 2

August 10

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