Holding on…letting go…trusting…hurting…questioning…needing…willing, wanting, praying…
Trying to hope when hope is dim, knowing the pull of brokenness and shame when clouds of deep darkness and depression loom overhead…so hard to have been in this place and see others walking there believing they are alone and that no one understands. Reaching out only to have your arms pushed away and harsh words spoken into your ears, hurting and knowing there is nothing to do other than to bear it…and wait.
I often think of the scripture that says they have ears but cannot hear and eyes but cannot see. What I know I’m willing to share, but nothing can be forced and for reasons, many and complex, sometimes people refuse help, refuse hope, refuse healing and cling instead to their darkness like a cloak they must have in order to survive, when in truth the only way to truly live is to throw off that old ugly cloak of pain and put on something new, bright, and clean.
Change direction…live in a new way, choose a different path if all you are finding where you are is darkness.
So you know if you read my blog there are hurting people in my life that I love deeply and the hardest thing for me is to accept I cannot change the painful circumstances of the lives of those I love.
Love is a beautiful thing, can be a freeing thing, but is also a binding thing. When those we love hurt, we hurt too. When those we love hurt us, genuine love does not go away. It lingers there as if no offense has taken place. The deeper the love, the deeper the hurt, the greater the hope the more severe the devastation when tears of disappointment drain the hope away from your heart leaving it void.
Daily discipline, making clear choices, refusing to lash out, focusing on the positives that exist and those we can shape by our own hands with God’s help…these practices make a fundamental difference in any life.
Every human being is faced with difficulties, challenges, and tough choices. We all come up against things we did not anticipate. This world can be cruel. Some face far worse circumstances than others, yet the most horrific circumstances have brought to light the amazing strengths and resilience in some.
I’ve read accounts of holocaust survivors that have brought me to tears. Reading the stories of so many who refused to succumb to hatred and meanness even under the absolute harshest of circumstances proves that love indeed is stronger than hate. Goodness is stronger than evil, and light overcomes darkness when it is sought, chosen, and cherished.
There can be purpose found in our suffering and we can choose even that which hurts us to bring about good in our own lives and in the lives of others. I determined a very long time ago that I would live each day focusing on what I could do to make the world a kinder, gentler place. I know I can’t stop others from doing harm, but I can surely choose not to do harm myself. I can choose to give a kind word, to have an attitude of thanks, to offer help and love and encouragement.
Noah was sick in the night with a stomach virus and Erick was away all night working. At 3am I was sitting in the bathroom floor with Noah. I looked up into his precious child eyes and offfered him comforting words and reassurance that he would be okay, that I would take care of him and stay close. He was shaking he was so weak so I offered him strength. He was afraid so I offered him compassion and promised to stay by his side.
I thought about how those times build relationship. I tell him I love him every day and show him in little ways, but in the middle of the night when a child is sick and afraid, I was able to make my commitment even clearer, more tangible, to prove my own needs for rest or comfort would not pull me away from him. He matters enough to me for me to make sacrifices for him. That is love…
Life, every day, gives everyone of us opportunities to live the way we want to live, to help shape the world into a place more like the one we want it to be. Every person has far more impact than one might think. I learned how precious the gift of friendship was when it was offered to me. I learned how wonderful marriage could be when my husband chose to love me and be kind to me when I wasn’t at my best. I learned the power of encouragement when someone took the time to say to me, “I know you can do it!”
There is great power in our choices to do great good or great ill in the lives of all those we touch. If you don’t like how the world is, do something to make it better! It starts in our own homes, in our places of work, in our churches and communities. Ohhh, forgive my ramblings. If someone, anyone, reads my words and “gets it” then my purpose in sharing is worthwhile because it offers a companionship of sorts, a reminder that there is another soul out there who cares and seeks each day to make the best of the gift of life. May we all recognize our influence and use it for good.