Wednesday, December 16, 2009


I've entered a giveaway for a gratitude journal. I have not kept one before. I know the power of positive thinking. I count my blessings often. But that doesn't keep me from seeing the darker side. Maybe it helps keep me balanced, more so than if I only looked at the negative. But I'm feeling pretty weighed down with the weight of the burdens those around me are carrying tonight.

I am grateful for:
1. My husband, our marriage, and the support he gives me. His love is the closest to unconditional that I've ever experienced.
2. My children - the lights of my life.
3. My health.
4. A roof over my head and heat when it's cold.
5. Enough.
6. The ability to pursue my dreams.

I am heartbroken that not everyone I know has these things tonight, and I feel helpless to do anything about their need.

1 comment:

  1. It is indeed a challenge to find a healthy balance whenever we come close enough to people to see their wounds or to allow them to see ours.

    I sometimes detest the old adage: "Let go and let God." Well-intended, but how often I forget that the letting go has to do with how I would love to see the "story" written for others. The hardest thing for me, while serving as a missionary in Malawi, was letting go of that image for the masses of suffering people with lifespans of less than 45 years.

    It seems so selfish to focus on our own joys and needs. How often I have to remind myself that this is the calling that every person must accept, especially those of us in care-giving work. We also have to turn loose of our broken hearts.

    I just finished the book Shadow of the Titanic about Eva Hart who survived such horror that she could not even talk much about it for more than a half century. Many people who knew her quite well did not know this part of her story. What this woman experienced at age 7 changed her and taught her to care so much that she received an award from the Queen decades later because of her humanitarian work! Yet somehow she managed to accept what she could not change and found the courage to change so much in individual lives as she became a little proactive and led her clients to do the same. She really had no training for what she did, professionally or later as a volunteer. She dared to both take care of herself without letting go of her unique visions for the oppressed workers she served in Britain, all the while identifying with them so much because she had suffered such agony at age seven while huddled in a lifeboat and freezing all night, just clinging to life, while listening to the cries of those who were dying around her--including her own father.

    Much of her own inspiration came from the people on her crowded rescue ship who did such simple things to comfort her. It was those tiny comfort measures that she held in her heart as much as the trauma--like being given a place to sleep and a cup of tea. Her comforters had no way of knowing if her mother, from whom she'd been separated, would ever find her. This lady lived her entire life with those two elements guiding her--empathy for others because she had suffered and survived, as well as hope that was born in her through the smallest of words and acts of people who felt helpless to really do anything.