(An excerpt from Cultivating Love and Renewal by Dr Ken McGill)

As with any work you do, you will need to take breaks. Becoming skilled at loving yourself and others infers that you will demonstrate patience, which is beautifully captured in the picture above. Being patient, which I remind you is a cultivated skill originally gifted to you from your Higher Power, is like handing a heated liquid (your emotions) to another in a manner in which they can receive the contents.

Carefully communicating your pain, anger, hopelessness and devastation in addition to your love, joy, hope, desire and passion communicates respect and love to your spouse. The opposite of course is to grant yourself permission to throw the heated emotions onto your spouse (rage) which further complicates the development of love and creates unnecessary trauma and schisms.

Wisdom, defined as becoming skilled at living means we learn, practice and become proficient at recognizing when we are “worked up,” need to take a break, ask for what we need, responsibly contain our behaviors, demonstrate empathy and become adept at delivering patience.

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Imagine if the picture above were a puzzle. The “sweet and mature” expression of love is experienced as you and your spouse have diligently and patiently spent your time, energy, toil, commitment, power and insight to identify and accurately assemble the pieces of your “life puzzle” (up to this point) into their correct place.

As you work in the rows of your life daily and you have gained proficiency in utilizing your tools to create growth in your relational garden, then you have transformed what could have been a barren, forsaken and devastating life experience into something resembling a fruitful, functional and edifying grove. In spite of your weariness, your conflict, your trauma and your hunger, you persevere in your work and in so doing, you “co-create” new experiences, new memories, new life scripts and life positions that are respectful, empowering and loving for yourself and each other. Your commitment to work in the field of your life, in season and out, until your work is done producing empowering fruit (love) is nothing short of a miracle and is the word picture of “mature love” (realizing how all of the puzzle pieces of life with all of their complexity fit to form a picture you understand).

Keep up your great work in the most important and valuable garden imaginable — the precious garden of your relationship, marriage and/or family. May you be fruitful in your effort to cultivate love!

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About Dr Ken McGill

Dr. Ken McGill is an ordained minister and has been involved in counseling for more than 25 years. Dr. McGill holds a Bachelor's degree in Religion from Pacific Christian College (now Hope International University), a Certificate of Completion in the Alcohol and Drug Studies/Counseling Program from the University of California at Los Angeles and a Masters degree in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University. Dr. McGill received his Doctorate in Clinical Psychology with an emphasis in Family Psychology from Azusa Pacific University in May, 2003. Dr. McGill's dissertation focused on the development of an integrated treatment program for the sexually addicted homeless population, and Ken was "personally mentored" by dissertation committee member Dr. Patrick Carnes, a pioneer in the field of sex addiction work. Dr. McGill authored a chapter in the text The Clinical Management of Sex Addiction, with his chapter addressing the homeless and sex addiction. Dr. McGill is also a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in the States of Texas and California and Mississippi, and is a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist, through the International Institute for Trauma and Addictive Professionals (IITAP). Dr. McGill had a private practice in Glendora, CA (Aspen Counseling Center), Inglewood, CA (Faithful Central Bible Church), and Hattiesburg, MS (River of Life Church), specializing in the following areas with individuals, couples, families, groups and psychoeducational training: addictions and recovery, pre-marital, marital and family counseling, issues related to traumatization and abuse, as well as depression, grief, loss, anger management and men's and women's issues. Dr. McGill also provided psychotherapeutic treatment with Student-Athletes on the University of Southern Mississippi Football and Men's Basketball teams. Dr. McGill served as the Director of the Gentle Path Program, which is a seven-week residential program, for people who are challenged with sexual addiction, sexual anorexia, and relationship issues. Dr. McGill also supervised Doctoral students in the Southern Mississippi Psychology Internship Consortium with the University of Southern Mississippi. Dr. McGill was inducted into the Azusa Pacific University Academic Hall of Honor, School of Behavioral and Applied Sciences, in October, 2010. Dr. McGill currently works as a Private practice clinician with an office in Plano, Texas, providing treatment with people who are challenged in the areas mentioned above.

Category

addiction, affair, christian, communication, Daily Bread for Addressing Compulsion, emotions, family, feelings, forgiven, grief, health, hurt, loss, love, marriage, men, psychology, recover, recovery, relationship, relationships, self-help, sex addiction, sober, sobriety, spiritual growth, spirituality, theology, women