Karen Carpenter & Love

A few months ago now, one of my fellow ANG chaplains picked me up in his new vehicle.  He was showing me all the bells and whistles it had on it, including the sound system.  And the song he cranked up?  Karen Carpenter singing “Superstar”?  He saw the surprise on my face and joked, “Oh Tom, I’m old school.”

Karen Carpenter…her songs do take me back quite a bit.  When her songs were on top, I was in elementary school.  But as I listened now, as an adult, I couldn’t help but be amazed by the range and quality of her voice.  And what happened to her?  I remembered something about an eating disorder.

I found her poignant story on the internet. Here was this woman with a true gift but definitely wrestling with issues. What would cause that eating disorder? Could it be fame? Maybe. Could it be the pressure of being on the road all the time? It could. But something that stands out is the number of people she dated, then she married, and then divorced. And during all that, the eating disorder seemed to magnify. I don’t know for sure, but I would think personal relationships haunted her.

The number one problem I find counseling folks revolves around personal relationships (usually of the romantic variety).  God makes us to both love and be loved.  What does it mean when someone who has really gotten close to us doesn’t love us?  What does it mean when our love for them doesn’t seem to transform them and build the relationship?  It is easy to start having a negative view of oneself.

It is vital for us to remember that no matter how others show or reciprocate love, God always loves us. And God creates us to be loved.  If someone close to us closes the door on a relationship, it doesn’t mean that we are useless or that we will not find love in the future.

I know in my life, some of God’s greatest blessings came to me after I had been through the dark valleys.

It is vital for us to reach out and help those who are hurting.  And it is even more vital for those that are hurting to realize that a better tomorrow is out there.

All the best and until next time,

Tom

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