Transparency, Understanding, Love, and Unity- Pastor Todd Parish, Guest Blogger

by Davina Fankhauser
President - Fertility Within Reach

Have you ever been in a room full of people and felt totally alone? This is a common feeling for people wrestling with hidden sorrows and the lack of transparency often breaks apart bonds of love and unity. People dealing with Infertility are no exception and often feel isolated and alone with their pains.

Worse yet, people who are hurting with Infertility often do not know how to reach-out for help and find themselves surrounded by people oblivious to these hurts. Those who suspect there is a problem with their friend and who want to help often do not know how to reach-in. The pain is escalated because both sides can choose silence instead of risking exposure or accidentally saying the wrong thing while trying to assist.

There is help and hope to be found within the healing power of love and community.  The first thing we must consider is the safety found in transparency. Even though faithful individuals are actively “plugged-in” to the social and educational structure of church, they carry silent burdens they do not know how to reveal. These are among many walls which get in the way of transparency, understanding, and unity.

Often, from the wounded point of view, there are pains so deep one dare not share. These are mainly feelings of isolation, low self-esteem, or worse yet doubts about faith, the power of prayer, and God’s love. Many fear they will be judged just for sharing their hurts or worse yet, no one will understand.

To break down these walls, people must be encouraged to share and to bear one another’s burdens. A good way to start is for the wounded person to confide in a close friend or pastor and ask to be introduced to other people struggling with these same issues in the church.  In our church we have small groups built around specific family and personal needs.  A great source of strength is connecting with others who have walked the same road, or those who are walking at the same time. There is great healing in this type of love and unity.

Solomon said, “There is nothing new under the sun”. I find this is true. Take a risk. Ask a safe person for help you plug-in with others who have hurt in the manner you are. Chances are many people in your church are struggling, or have struggled, with the same issues.

Let me offer words of suggestion on love.

If you are wounded, remember love means you do not have to hide your problems. Love encourages you to share your hurts, fears, and even issues of faith. Love also allows you to share freely and not suffer repercussions, criticisms, and gossip.

If you desire to help the wounded, remember, love means you do not have to fix the problem; instead of being a clinician, try being a supportive friend who just listens, loves, and cares.  If your friend agrees and is ready to take the next step into deeper transparency and healing, look for opportunities to guide them to others who have shared similar journeys.

Lastly, in a small community, when one person hurts, everyone hurts. When one suffers, the whole body suffers. All people in a church or small group have a role in the healing process. Transparency, love, and unity, are three great keys for healing which can help those suffering understand they are not alone.

May God bless you as you continue to love one another.

-Pastor Todd Parish

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Davina Fankhauser

President - Fertility Within Reach