Seen Heard & Loved by Kassandra Matthews

To be Seen Heard & Loved has deep meaning for me in my context.

I serve at a local long-term care home providing spiritual care. In these visits, I walk with the ill, elderly, dying residents through what is a difficult time marked by change, loss and pain. I have the opportunity to let them know that they are SEEN, that they are HEARD, that they are LOVED, not just by me, but by a GOD who is ever-present, whose heart breaks first, who understands their pain.  I appreciate each time that they find the courage to open up to me and allow me to bear witness to their stories. When I enter someone’s room and they begin to tell the story of their suffering, I can’t help but believe, over and over, that I am on holy ground, a place where God is very close.  In what is called “thin places,” by the ancient Celts, the veil between heaven and earth is lifted, the sacred touches the mundane.  I feel this way quite often at this nursing home, of all places. It is a vulnerable place—a place that reminds us that we are close to death, that we are fragile, that we suffer and experience pain. And yet. And yet within those walls, I witness on a daily basis the reality of strength, courage, hope, and recovery.  The residents teach me about the tenacity of the human spirit, that people heal, and that I am capable of bearing witness to pain and holding space for them. A nursing home of all places for me is a place of holy ground and it’s amazing to me the ways that Jesus really intercedes, gives me the right words to remind them that they are seen, heard and loved. 

To be Seen Heard & Loved is also relevant to me in my work at St. Andrew’s. It is so amazing to me how God takes our humble worship plans and weaves them together in ways I could never imagine. So many things that our congregation will think happened as a result of my plans actually are the Holy Spirit moving and transforming our experience in the moment. It is so special that I don’t think I could ever get used to it. I am blessed to witness it and feel like I have a backstage pass to take in the mystery of God at work. It is a blessing to “see” and “hear” God’s transforming love!

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