Text: Anna Pärkkä
Translation: Sirkka-Liisa Leinonen
Many people close to us may experience loneliness, though we may not even be aware of it. What could we do if we find that someone is struggling with loneliness? We can invite them over for a visit, a cup of coffee or sauna or suggest that they join a hobby group. It is often enough just to recognize them by greeting or smiling. People feel good when they are seen and spoken to.
Services and other congregational activities are open to all people. They provide feelings of togetherness, but it is also possible to be feel lonely in such situations. There may be personal matters that one would like to share confidentially with someone or to ask questions and receive answers. A lonely person should pray that God would give them friends.
People may even feel themselves bullied among believers. The victim may, for instance, feel left out of group they would like to belong to. This problem is probably most common among young people still on their way to adulthood and uncertain about themselves.
People may also experience bullying in everyday situations, even by their boss at work. It is hard to live one’s daily life as a victim of bullying. I have wondered how consciously people bully others. Maybe the bullies have poor self-esteem and bullying others makes them feel better about it.
God’s word, however. teaches us to love our neighbors, even our enemies. It may also happen that we treat our neighbors badly without being aware of it. I think most bullying is deliberate, but there are situations where we may not necessarily understand that our behavior offends the other person. People also feel differently about things. Some people are more sensitive, while others are less easily offended. These differences can be due to many things.
Bullying and maltreatment leave scars. People with such scars may interpret another person’s behavior more sensitively as bullying, even when the other person has not meant any harm.
I have often wondered about the ways in which we pass on to our children the things we have learnt. How we communicate with our spouse, how we speak to our children, what kind of language we find acceptable between children, and so on. Children are gifts. Who would want to break their gifts?
If only we could communicate with others kindly, even in our homes among our dear ones. Mothers and fathers often use their authority on their children without paying attention to the child’s emotional state. A child may have experienced challenges at school, but we just order them to do their home duties without recognizing their negative feelings. As parents, we should sensitively listen to our children and adolescents and not just order them coldly.
There are many challenges and difficulties in our time, but God has promised to help us all. We can trust that God will guide our lives. He will see into our hearts and will know what we need.
There are many reasons for us to be happy and grateful. God’s grace is abundant and the gospel is powerful. We can trust in that even today.
Häpeä on monessa tilanteessa tarpeellinen tunne, jota me ihmiset herkästi peittelemme. Sen taustalla voi olla ajatus siitä, että muut ihmiset pitävät meitä huonona tai väärin käyttäytyvänä. Häpeän kyljessä esiintyviä tuntemuksia ovat esimerkiksi kelpaamattomuus, huonommuus ja jopa mitättömyys.
Nuortenkirja kertoo kahdeksasluokkalaisen Sallan kouluvuodesta, jonka aikana rinnakkaisluokkalainen Niko tulee pikkuhiljaa osaksi kouluarkea. Kirja käsittelee ihastumista, ystävyyttä sekä vastuullisuutta ja rehellisyyttä ihmissuhteissa.
Lämminhenkisessä lastenkirjassa kuvataan perheen vaikean tilanteen herättämiä tunteita ja pelkoja sekä niistä selviytymistä. Kirja tarkastelee lapsen näkökulmasta perheen muuttunutta elämää, joka vähitellen alkaa tuntua tutulta. Läheisten rakkaus ja uskon tuoma turva kantavat.