SEEKING WISDOM IN A TIME OF LOSS

Molly W. Blancke, LCC Executive Director
July 2, 2020

Many people, including several of our counselors, have tried to put the insecurities and anxieties of the last few months into words, hoping that their words will bring greater understanding and therefore, be of comfort in such trying times.  During this COVID pandemic, we are all suffering losses; some are the same and others different, depending on our circumstances. 

We are all experiencing a loss of confidence in what we know as ‘normal’ in our lives, a loss of the sense of control over our lives and loss of the ability to be present physically to others, as before, when often needed most. Due to the effects of COVID, some of us are also experiencing painful loss of loved ones, loss of income, loss of jobs, loss of celebration of momentous occasions, or a loss in career or our perceived roles in life.  

Losses do not have to be without hope or even, sometimes, without invaluable lessons.

However, these losses do not have to be without hope or even, sometimes, without invaluable lessons. In his incredibly insightful book about facing devastating loss, A Grace Disguised, Jerry Sittser talks about the regrets that always accompany losses. Sittser lost his wife, mother and four year old daughter all at once in a tragic automobile crash, an accident that was caused by a drunk driver. He states: “People can be changed by the unchangeable losses they experience. Thus, for redemption to occur, they must let go of the loss itself and embrace the good effects the loss can have on their lives…..In other words, they must seek personal transformation, which comes only by grace.” Elsewhere, he notes, “The gift of divine forgiveness will help us forgive ourselves. Without it, regret becomes a form of self-punishment”. 

Don’t allow the regrets you may feel about the losses you have sustained to control your life. God can forgive any regrets you may have, giving you the space and ability to forgive yourself. He can provide the grace needed to allow self-kindness and gentleness in dealing with the losses so that transformation can eventually occur. 

It is important to seek the help of others if you cannot do this on your own. Seeking a Christian faith-based mental health counselor to help you deal with losses incurred means having someone to listen and help you sort out your feelings as well as to remind you of God’s unconditional love as evidenced at many times during your life. It requires courage and the desire to change. He or she can provide the objective viewpoint and at the same time, be there to walk with you through the painful parts of the losses. 

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Our caring counselors are still providing safe, confidential virtual counseling sessions. Please reach out if we can help you. 

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Molly W. Blancke, MPA, BSW, BA, has been the Executive Director of Lutheran Counseling Center (LCC) in New York since 2006.  A native South Carolinian, before coming to New York Molly demonstrated leadership skills as the Social Services Director for a large nursing home complex for eight years and previously, as a social worker advocate with mentally challenged children and their families, encouraging and fostering independence in their communities. Molly is also an accomplished church organist and pianist and has worked in the past for several churches in music director positions.

She has a Master’s in Public Administration (MPA) with a concentration in ‘Non-Profit Management’ from Long Island University and is an adjunct professor in the MPA program there. She also earned a B.S.W. in Social Work and a B.A. in Sociology and Music.

Molly is currently a member of ALDE (Association of Lutheran Development Executives) where she serves as a presenter for the Enlighten Essentials Fundraising and Marketing workshops. She is also a member of  LSA (Lutheran Services in America), is on the board of LSNYA (Lutheran Services New York Alliance), is a member of Pi Alpha Alpha and received their award of excellence in 2009. In 2015 she was the proud recipient of the Rande Abbe Christian Service Award from LI Lutheran Middle & High School. She has held volunteer positions as both accompanist for various choral groups as well as in social work agencies, working with expectant mothers and their families.

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