Archive for body language

Unspoken Responses… Christine McDonald

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Christine "Clarity" McDonald with tags , , , , , on August 31, 2021 by paulthepoke

Your unspoken responses—your body language, eye contact, and positioning—speak a thousand words to those you are trying to engage with. Hurting individuals are no stranger to stigmas and judgment. While they are used to physical touch being distorted and misused, they are equally used to being held at arm’s length.

One time, I met an individual who was walking around praying for Kansas City’s homeless. I had two black eyes and was sick. I weighed about 90 pounds and hadn’t changed clothes in days. I even had blood on my shirt. She asked if she could pray for me. I said, “Sure.” She asked if there was anything she could pray for me about that I needed at that moment. I said, “Food and a shower and clean clothes.” The entire time she prayed for those things for me, she was staring at the blood that covered my shirt.

The blood was from a beating I had taken from a buyer of sex. He had locked the doors of his car, and each time he’d stop and say, “Get out,” he’d lock the door again. He banged my head against the window, calling me a stupid, filthy ho. He’d drive, then stop, and repeat, until he at last let me out. I had a bloody nose, and I believe that is why he let me out. He cursed and punched me because I got blood on his car door.

The woman praying for me didn’t make eye contact with me. She just stared at the blood on my shirt, never connecting with me as an individual human being. I remember thinking, If she is one of those “Christians,” and I am asking her to pray for food because I’m hungry, how come she doesn’t have a sandwich or offer me some food? Was God, through prayer, going to magically put a sack lunch at my feet? As she spoke to my bloody shirt, she inadvertently confirmed the stigma and judgment I was so used to. She never once looked me in the eye.

A response like this carries a tremendous message to the hurting. It was as if she stood in shock at the sight of the bloody shirt, not truly hearing my words or seeing the person wearing the shirt. As far as I could tell, she was disregarding the pain that was right in front of her. She never asked, “What happened to you?” She just gawked. Her unspoken words and body language spoke thousands of words to me. I didn’t feel compassion from a woman who prayed for me. I felt inferior, isolated, and pushed away.

We can’t have these kinds of responses when engaging with hurting individuals. We have to hold ourselves together. Responses like these make them feel more shame, more hurt, and more brokenness. It is vital, no matter what is shared with us or what the person’s appearance is, that we never react in ways that dismiss their story or demean their humanity. Instead, we must always honor their hurt, their pain, and their journey.

Contact Information:
Christine C. McDonald
636-487-8986
Christine.CryPurple@gmail.com

“Love your neighbor, all of ’em.” -Christine Clarity McDonald

Through The Eyes of Grace – Christine C McDonald 

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCEj5RbFpuzjx_CuksAqgyXA/featured

https://crypurplemovie.com/

%d bloggers like this: