Mr. Balázs Szegedi ( Budafok, May, 2015.)
I really enjoyed the one-year counselling course for beginners led by Marti Reimer. Last year two people from our church finished this course. This year five of us were able to attend. I considered whether I should sign up for the course. On the one hand, I asked whether it was necessary for me to attend it. Do I really want to study again, write tests, and do everything involved in a classroom? On the other hand, as good Christians, we need to deal with others instead of ourselves. We grew up. We learned that everything with “self” in it (self-knowledge, deeper understanding of one’s self) is selfish and wrong. Psychology, psycho-therapy and everything with psycho in it is inherently shady so we should keep our distance from them. Based on my experience, with the class of those in our church who are interested, and then the class of those who would like to grow, I was feeling that I would need to learn, move forward to be able to help others better.
I will just add it quietly as a side-note that I wanted to know and understand myself in a deeper way, more than anything. Increasingly, I ran into my limits, had to face my deficiencies and I would have liked to understand why I did things in a certain way, why I reacted in a given way. As a church member, I was more and more wondering, what my spiritual gifts were from God. How could I identify them so that I could use them in my place God intended me to be? So that’s how it started!!
If I look back to this year, one word comes to mind: GIFT. What’s more, a huge one! We’ve learnt a lot, our horizon has been widened and we started to look at our life from new aspects.
For me, the most important thing has been things I have learnt and realized about myself. It is painful when you peel off carefully all the protective layers which hide “what is in your heart” and you start to see the depth of your own soul. It was shocking to see my real motivations, my desires which drive me to do things and define why I do what I do. I didn’t have to face them previously. They are in the depth and unfold their effects there slowly, quietly. It is like an operation. When at the beginning the doctor has to cut, it is neither nice nor good. But when things are revealed, they come to the surface and finally healing can start!
This is what I have received and I can’t estimate its value. It’s nothing like the school graduation exam, which you passed once and then it’s over and you are done with it. We have to work on it continuously. I have to ask God over and over to search me and show me areas where I need to change! Based on my experience it’s rather tough! My fixed ideas and way of thinking are stubborn, prone to resist any change. But God is mightier and His Spirit makes me able to change! It’s just so great when I can make some progress in that walk! He does both the revealing and the healing (“...he injures, but his hands also heal...”), He makes us more and more capable of helping others. At the beginning of the course we were enthusiastic which nearly had turned into despair because we started to see how incompetent we are and how little we know. Nevertheless, as we were talking with each other we became more certain that it was not a coincidence that so far 7 of us could attend this course from our church. God wants to use it in the life of the community. So far we haven’t seen in what way we are going to do that. Yet, during the prayer week of our church we had started something new, which we named “I am here to listen to you!” Anyone who wanted to talk with someone, to pray with someone had a chance to do so at the end of each day.
This little group of “Here I am to listen to you!” still works. If you need someone to listen to your concerns, to pray with and trust us, then we are more than happy to listen to you!