Great day & Happy Thursday!
Today I am in a rather emotional state of being. I am not depressed or overwhelmed or having thoughts of suicide, neither do I feel like bringing harm to others. Like many other times, I am in a reflective posture.
My heart aches for my friends (who are MORE than that, they are my brothers) that buried their dad this week. My heart aches for my cousin who buried her son not long ago. My heart aches for my two Sister-friends (one buried her dad and the other buried her mother). My heart aches for all those experiencing pain, grief, and sickness. My heart even aches and yearns for my own parents who transitioned this life sixteen plus years ago.
This week I traveled to my hometown (Baltimore), for my Brother-Friends dad's funeral. Driving over thirteen hundred (1300) miles round trip gave me plenty of time to think. I played music to distract my thoughts but somehow I always came back to them. Both life (babies being born) and death have a way of making you stop and ponder about the past, present, and even the future.
Today's message shares a common thread with every post written in the past, one of hope, of love, of encouragement, of uplift; but most importantly, one that is real and relates to each and every one of us. Pain unexpectedly seems to find us no matter how much we try to dodge it's grip. How we deal with pain (our reactions) matter more than the pain itself. Some of us allow grief and pain to strangle life from us. We become severely depressed. We become overly anxious and nervous. We withdraw from life (although we appear to be present). We try suppressing our thoughts and feelings with illegal and even legal substances. We eat obsessively. We become so angry that we lash out at people who love and care for us. I could go on and on about the ways in which we respond to our internal pains. Instead, I will share with you a reminder:
Regardless of whether you believe in God or not, or whether you read the bible or not; God is near and His word tells us that their is a time and a season for EVERYTHING that we experience in this life. You will laugh, and cry, and be up and then down. You will enjoy the gift of life and mourn those same lives. You enjoy a time of fruitfulness and growth and a time of what appears to be decay (or stagnation) in growth. You will have times where you have much to say and other times where you will be have nothing to say at all. (Paraphrase from Ecclesiastes 3)
My prayer for you today is that you embrace each season as it comes. Additionally, do not be afraid to ask for help. We all need help through difficult situations sometimes. Do not allow noise to cloud the silence you may need (but not want). It may be in the silence that you find peace and healing. No one should tell you to "just get over it." That is not in the word, but each of us should try uplifting others with love and gentleness in their times of grief and pain. And seriously, if you just feel like you are NOT moving beyond your pain and it begins to affect your daily life (you cannot get out of bed, you do not feel like life has purpose or meaning, you feel suicidal, you cannot eat or sleep) than by all means, seek medical help.
COUNSELING IS NOT A DIRTY WORD!!!
I do not have a fancy, trumped up ending to this post. I just simply wanted to remind those dealing with pain that you are not alone!!!
Holy and loving God, hear the cry of your children. We need you at this moment. Heal hearts that are broken. Be the comfort people need in this moment. Ease stress and make burdens light. Be with the rejected, neglected, betrayed, and those feeling lost and hopeless. Send living angels in the earth to meet their needs. Help us to hear the heart cries of those around us. Help us to be listening ears. And Lord, when we don't know what to pray or what to say, hear what's in our tears. Allow hugs to be enough in the moment. Surround us with love, support and encouragement. Thank you for all you are and all you do! Most importantly, allow us to rest in You. Be our strength. We trust you, In Jesus name, Amen