Once I asked God for an image of my life’s meaning. What I saw was a lighthouse.
That won’t seem unusual to those who’ve been to my house in summer when lighthouses become a decorative item. We’ve always been drawn to them, and we generally buy an image of each lighthouse we visit. Only my husband has been brave enough to climb the scariest of old spiral staircases to the top. But we both love them.
Being a lighthouse is also an image of the difference between being loving to someone who is experiencing a storm of mental illness and being codependent. The lighthouse shines its light to guide the ships to safety. It does not drag itself off its rock and wade into the storm in an attempt to grab the ship and drag it to safety. It sounds the foghorn, it’s true, but it doesn’t engage in a lengthy argument about why the ship should head in its direction.
Fortunately, the lighthouse is attached to its rock, just I am attached to my Rock. So we allow the ship to use us as a guide or to ignore all our sound advice. We look strong, maybe even stronger than we feel, and we shine our light so that all can see it.