MYTH #5: An active care-giver might feel, "But I am not really doing anything."
Each of our active care-givers has said it and meant it, "It just doesn't feel like I did anything!" . . . They all know better -- on several counts.
First of all, the care-receivers have told them otherwise: "This has been so helpful" or "You've been so good for me" or a simple heart-felt "Thank you." The messages came unsolicited and with sincerity.
Second, they know how hard they have worked at it, beginning with 50 hours of training and then regular group meetings to reinforce and support each other in how to go about Stephen Ministry -- not to mention actually being there for the care-receiver. Being an authentic listener IS real work.
Third, our training told us it would be like this. We know our job is not to create a solution to fix some problem. The role has been described as a ministry of presence . . . to walk alongside someone suffering pain or loss. How hard should that be?
And finally, we all have accepted that God is the cure-giver. Stephen Ministers are simply care-givers. Maybe it is when we don't try to beat God to the punch that we are most effective. So, in that sense, maybe this is not a myth. It is about what God does, not what Stephen Ministers do.