God's Love, Love, Mentor/Mentee, Mentoring, Miscellaneous

How to Love

The title,  How to Love,  has become a popular song bythe  artist Lil’ Wayne.  However it holds various meanings to me.  I am a counselor and social worker and in my field I see a plethora of things that my clients struggle with.  I was recently meeting with one of my teenage clients and she slid a piece of paper across the table.  She told me she wrote a poem entitled “How to Love” and wanted me to read it. 

I was immediately excited and intrigued because I love poetry and this is a client of few words.  This was a major breakthrough for her.  The poem discussed her insecurities and uneasiness in the area of love.  You may be thinking, “Who really knew how to love as a teenager anyway?”  However, it was more than that.  She went into detail about the pain and anguish that she felt by not having a mother, father, sibling or grandparent.  She felt she had no one to love her.  She went on to discuss how her mother left her at two days old and how she had only saw her once since then. 

I immediately attempted to point out the people that she did have in her life.  She went on to tell me she had none of those people.  Not a teacher, church member, counselor, or  family friend.  I was appalled! How she could know how to love if no one ever taught her?

No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,  neither the present nor things the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of  God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord”. (Romans 8:37-39 NIV)

It came to me that the best way to teach her how to love was through God.  I could not teach her how to love her like a mother should.  I could not make her family apart of her life. Instead I challenged her to look at the love that God had shown her.  We went on to discuss how she had all her needs met and when she thought she had no one God was always there. “Never will I leave you; Never will I forsake you.” (Hebrews 13:5b NIV)

In the midst of encouraging and uplifting her about God’s love I had to check myself.  How many times have I claimed that I do not have anyone to love me because I am not in a relationship or marriage? How often do I complain that I have no one to help me carry the burden? Do I entertain the thought that I have no loved one to wrap their arms around me?  The answer is I am often guilty of that as well.  God taught us how to love long before we were even born because He first loved us.

Dear Daddy,

Please remind me that I am always loved by You. When I feel as though I have no one, remind me that You have always been there.  Please allow me to love my neighbors and uplift those that feel that they have no one.  Thank You, Lord, for blessing me with family that have always loved me.   I thank You for affording me the opportunity to love others as you have loved us. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Ladies, I encourage you to EMPOWER someone’s life by giving them the gift of love.  Look at our children and how many of them are looking for love in all the wrong places.  I EMPOWER you to guide them on the right path and show them what it means to have someone who cares about them.  Whether it’s your own children or children you mentor through a church or community organization, remember their future is in OUR hands.

Ms. Sherita Shelton currently resides in Nashville, Tennessee.  She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Master’s in Professional Counseling and is currently pursuing her counseling license.  Sherita works as a therapist and case manager for children as well as adults.  She facilitates groups for single women as well as offers mentoring and individual counseling for her clients.  Sherita’s favorite bible verse is Proverbs 3:5-6: “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lot not on your own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”

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5 thoughts on “How to Love”

  1. Sherita this is touching and your response to her is encouraging. So often we try to make others see the world through our eyes but our experiences shape us and in this case a mutual experience that you have both had is that God loves you. I am glad he imparted that wisdom for you to share with her. God bless the social workers and counselors of the world I know what it’s like to sit on the other side of that table and I pray that he continues to allow you to make a difference in the lives of others.

  2. Thank you for writing this EmpowerMoment! As a teen, I searched in the wrong places for love but thank God for his enduring grace and mercy! I came to know that I didn’t have to crave for another’s love when I had the greatest love of all. God bless you and smile because God loves you and I do too! Be blessed!!!

  3. Sherita, as a new member of the EmpowerMoments team, I am inspired by the honest self exposure that takes place when you all are writing. Prior to getting the position, I thought that it would be easy to write about me but as I contemplate what issue to tackle, I truly know that there is nothing easy about exposing one’s soul to the unknown. I applaud you all for sharing your most intimate trials with us and I hope that I am able to live up to the standards that have been established.

  4. Sherita,
    This post was awesome! As a teacher in an urban district I am often faced with teenagers that don’t no how to love because they have never been loved. Thanks for inspiring me to continue showing those students love as God has loved me.

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