Thursday, September 17, 2020

NEWSPAPER PUBLISHED WEEKLY ON WEDNESDAY • WEBSITE UPDATED WEEKLY FOR THURSDAY

Home Opinions Digging deeper into grace (11/01/2017)

Digging deeper into grace (11/01/2017)

An old Swedish proverb states, “Shared joy is a double joy; shared sorrow is half a sorrow.”

That is not just a bit of sweet sentiment. That is also the finding of recent medical research.

In the November 2017 issue of Christianity Today, Katie Jo Ramsey discusses her personal experience with suffering before citing the scientific evidence. She shares,

“One day a friend stopped by after she finished work to say hello. As she sat next to me on the couch, all I could do was weep. I was drowning in the sorrow of uncertainty, worried my life would never improve, but she wordlessly comforted me by coexisting with my suffering. By letting her see me undone, I realized I was loved even in such a broken state. The simple joy of being received by my friend, who refused to minimize my pain or try to fix me, created new life in the middle of grief. Joy’s coexistence with pain and vulnerability became part of my memory that evening. Suffering internalized is dark and heavy, but suffering shared engenders courage and hope.”

Then she gets technical: “Interpersonal neurobiology, a relatively new interdisciplinary approach to the brain and mindfulness, emphasizes the role of relationships on ‘neural integration’—like my friends’ compassion impacting my own experience. In The Developing Mind, neuropsychiatrist Dan Siegel, who introduced the field, described how feelings of shame and suffering obstruct our ability to regulate emotions and responses, but as we feel heard and received by others, mental function and overall wellbeing can improve.

“From the first moments of life, just as we develop and survive in response to the relationships around us, so do our brains. Social connections are so essential to human well-being that they actually share a neurological pathway with physical pain.

“The more I discover about pain and relationships through research and my own experience, the more I see relationships as the means by which pain and corresponding suffering can be transformed.”

Dr. Henry Cloud addresses the same subject in his book, “The Secret Things of God.” He writes,

“One of my favorite examples of connectedness comes from a body of research regarding cortisol release in monkeys, rats, and other animals under stress. Cortisol is not something you want a great deal of floating around in your brain. It is a strong stress hormone. When they put a monkey in a cage and pipe in loud, scary noises (thus, high stress for the poor monkey), the amounts of this chemical in the monkey’s system is—as you’d expect—very high. But get this…when they put one of his buddies in the cage with him—even though the loud, scary noises are continued—the amount of cortisol in his brain goes down. The outside stressor is the same, but the inside stress level goes down just from having a friend nearby.”

Ramsey concludes her article with these words,

“Perhaps that is the gift of suffering: It forces us to realize we cannot bear the pain of life on our own. When I allow my suffering to be seen and received by others, my brain learns how to trust. Ultimately, relationships of shared brokenness teach my brain to rely on the only Person who can and will redeem the pain so rampant in my body and this world. My brain, like my body and soul, was made to crave relationships. In my suffering, I know I need others. More importantly, I know I need God.”

Here are my recommendations to you:

Are you hurting in some way? Don’t hold it inside. Don’t suffer alone. Share your pain with someone you can trust.

Do you know someone who is hurting? Reach out to that person. Sit with that person and listen.  You don’t have to “do” anything; just be there. Be a part of cutting suffering in half.

—Tom Tripp is the Pastor at the First Presbyterian Church of Colusa.

Pastor Tom Tripp
Pastor Tom Tripp
Tom Tripp is the former minister at First Presbyterian Church in Colusa; and is currently the pastor at First Presbyterian Church in Sun City, AZ. You can send him a message at: tgtripp52@gmail.com

More News

Three killed on I-5 in two separate accidents 

Three people were killed on Interstate 5 in Colusa County over a five day period in two separate accidents.  A Yuba City couple were killed...

Garden Club Plant Sale

The Garden Club of Colusa County hosted their fall plant sale in the Davison Pavilion in Colusa on Saturday, Sept. 8. The event, which...

Coaches Corner: Dan Kiely

Soccer in Colusa County has a long history of competitive play and a major contributor to that tradition is Colusa High School boys’ soccer...

First Patriot Day ceremony held at Williams Elementary School

Students who attend Williams Elementary School were not alive 19 years ago when hijackers used airplanes as weapons of destruction to kill nearly 3,000...

Distance learning raises questions about home imagery

Editors Note: The article has been updated from the print version to correct the spelling of Tiffany Sines. Distance learning seems to be more challenging...

Local Government

County appoints new Airport Advisory Committee

The Colusa County Board of Supervisors on Sept. 1 appointed seven members to the newly restructured Airport Advisory Committee. The previous committee of about 15...

Colusa Police Department: July 2020

The City of Colusa Police Department responded to 382 calls for service, up from 311 in June. There were an additional 31 calls to...

City of Colusa adopts strategy for economic development

The Colusa City Council last week adopted the final Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy, a report that will serve as a roadmap intended to diversify...

Public & Legal Notices

FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT FILE NO. 2020-0000072 Date filed: September 11, 2020 The following persons are doing business as: GULLATT RANCH Business Address: 6880 GREENBAY ROAD, ARBUCKLE, CA 95912 Mailing...

FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT FILE NO. 2020-0000071 Date filed: September 1, 2020 The following persons are doing business as: C & C ENGINEERING Business Address: 2081 LONE STAR ROAD,...

Notice of Lien Sale

NOTICE OF LIEN SALE SEPTEMBER 20, 2020 AT 5:00 PM 423 SIOC STREET, COLUSA, CA 95932 8’  3’ GOLD WING 09/16/2020 • WPR #2020-1142

CIUDAD DE COLUSA AVISO DE AUDIENCIA PÚBLICA

CIUDAD DE COLUSA AVISO DE AUDIENCIA PÚBLICA AVISO SE DA A LA PRESENTE QUE la Comisión de Ciudad de Colusa y  Planificación llevará a cabo un...

CITY OF COLUSA NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING

CITY OF COLUSA NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the City of Colusa and Planning Commission will hold public workshop on Wednesday, September...