THE COUNSELOR'S CORNER: Coming towards you


By Fred Cavaiani

This past Sunday many denominations celebrated the beginning of Advent. It is a time of preparation for Christmas. But the real meaning of Advent comes from two Latin words Ad which means toward someone and Ventus which means coming. Put those two words together and it means "coming towards." These weeks before Christmas are a time to reflect on what is "coming towards us." Is there a God in your life that you can experience as "coming towards" you? Is there love coming towards you at this point in your life?

To experience something positive coming toward me or someone positive and loving coming toward me, I must first have an open, compassionate heart toward other people. It is the road to a life filled with inner peace and joy.

These days before Christmas are filled with songs and bells. Hearts seem to become more open at this time of the year. Parties and celebrations begin this week. We start thinking about those who are close to us. And why are some people close to us? It is because we have an open heart toward these people. After many years of family and friendship, there are some people whom we have kept an open and loving heart toward no matter what our differences may have been. We have lived the words of "coming toward" certain people with love and kindness and acceptance.

What the world needs most is for all of us to "come toward" each other with love and compassion. When I put energy in staying away from others, I put myself into a negative focus. I then use up valuable emotional and spiritual energy to remain in a negative attitude. This negative energy them emanates from me and people will experience my negativity. I end up pushing people away from me without saying a word. They simply experience my negative presence and energy.

When I spend energy in "coming towards" other people by attentive listening and loving words, I am experienced by others in a positive, uplifting manner.

Advent is a time of "coming towards" God and "coming towards" other people. When I do this, I begin to realize that there is a God that is always "coming towards" me in Love and that there will always be people that are "coming towards" me in love and kindness.

To see and experience Love in each moment and in every person, I need to reach others in a loving manner.

This past weekend I gave a retreat to about 43 people from Friday evening until Sunday noon. It was a marvelous, spiritual experience for all. There was such a closeness and intimacy among this group. They shared with one another in such a profound, loving and open manner. They meditated together, shared their lives and brokenness with each other, and profoundly experienced a deeper union with God. Then on Sunday evening I did a program which I do every couple of months called a Dinner Date with your Spouse. This group did the same thing and the couples left feeling so much closer to each other because they found themselves "coming towards" each other. The theme for the evening was "Christmas nudges us toward more intimacy."

Life is always about God "coming toward us" in a deeper manner and it is about each of us making the effort to "come toward" others in a deeper manner. Enjoy these next weeks before whatever holiday you will be celebrating and whatever your faith, philosophy or theology will be celebrating. It is the same for all of us "to come toward" each other in loving actions and kindness. Life is always about each of us "coming toward" others. It should never be about going away from each other.


Fred Cavaiani is a licensed marriage & family therapist and psychotherapist with a private practice in Troy. He is the founder of Marriage Growth Center, a consultant for the Detroit Medical Center, and Henry Ford Medical Center. He conducts numerous programs for groups throughout Southeastern Michigan he is also on staff at Capuchin Retreat Center in Washington, MI. His column in the Legal News runs every other Tuesday. He can be reached at 248-362-3340. His e-mail address is:

Published: Tue, Dec 04, 2018