I can see how throughout my life, whether I felt lost and confused, way too sure of myself or somewhere in between, that line of truth has always been there running right through the center of it...

I remember very clearly that when I was 4 years old, I wanted to be a priest. I remember this because I used to sit my parents down and offer my 4 year-old’s version of the Catholic Mass to them. I would pour grape juice into a fancy goblet and create the sacred “host” by compressing slices of Wonder Bread and forming them into perfect circles with different sized jar lids as molds – large lid for the priest’s host, small lid for the flock’s.

I would don my simple makeshift vestments, a soft baby blue blanket if I remember it correctly, proceed to my folding card table altar, take my place behind it, hold the big priest’s host high above my head and recite the bits of the mass that I could remember. I’m sure my parents must have thought I was the cutest little priest who ever lived. I’m grateful for their kind indulgence of me.

I mention this anecdote from my childhood, because it has become clear to me that there is a line that runs straight through the center of my life, from that time to this, that carries the many forms my life’s calling has taken over the years.

I can see how throughout my life, whether I felt lost and confused, way too sure of myself or somewhere in between, that line of truth has always been there running right through the center of it.

Through all the paths I have walked …

Beloved youngest son, child priest, student, agnostic, outsider, athlete, bartender, teacher, manager, partier, desperate paranoid addict, drunkard (both out of and in recovery), rogue, rake, “savior,” miscreant, brooder, boxer, angry guy, depressed guy, joker, cynic, boyfriend, writer, loner, husband, aggrieved ex-husband, patient, healing ex-husband, graduate student, intern, friend, player, pray-er, scholar, seeker, clinician, psychotherapist, altar tender, ceremony assistant, church leader, healing man, happy man, good man, good husband (again!), beloved man, leader, counselor, helper, teacher (again!), relative, mentor, beginner, who-knows-what’s-next?

… the truth of my calling has always been there. Today I have a great deal of compassion for that long stretch of time in my life when I could not see that line of truth, when I doubted it, rejected it and desperately longed for what was always right under my feet and running through the center of my heart and my life – always. I see it now. I am grateful.

I see now that every path I have walked, every wrong turn, fiasco, triumph, enhumblement, circumstance (terrible or serendipitous) that I have experienced along the way has made me into the helpful happy man I am today. I am grateful for it all.

ALL of it has been useful in my counseling work. Every experience of my life has contributed in some way, be it large or small, to the healing of myself or the self-healing of someone who has come to me asking for help. The true line is clear to me now – under my feet … through the center of my heart.

It’s a great privilege to assist people in their heart-felt, sometimes desperate, efforts to create a meaningful life, an inspiring and rewarding career or a happy, loving, fun relationship out of the raw material of their current circumstances.

It’s an honor for me to have the opportunity at this time in my life to help people as they begin to allow themselves to see through the eye of their heart and to appreciate the innate intelligence of their one true life – the authentic higher power.