You will come across people who are facing challenges that are hard. Don’t look at them with pity because their world is not about to end. Setbacks are stepping stones for comebacks. Offer to do something kind. Encourage them, pray and believe with them that God is making a way and doing something more amazing than we could ever imagine. Reach out, lift up, encourage. One kind expression can change someone’s day but so can one look of dread. Bring the hope someone needs today.
How did I not see it? I was retreating further and further into my safe space. The further I could escape from people, the better I felt. It didn’t take long before I was completely isolated and sinking into the depths of depression. I stopped trusting others and I put up a wall of defense so strong that no one would ever be able to hurt me again. I thought all people were alike. I had been tired of being tossed aside like a discarded piece of trash because I didn’t measure up to somebody’s standards. My mantra became, no one will ever have the power to hurt me again.
For as long as I can remember I have been brutally honest and transparent. Somehow that was the very thing that backfired on me time and time again. Instead of support, people would mock me and look down on me. I was done. For years I prayed that God would lead me to a tribe of woman. I needed a safe place to land and people I could trust but where were they? On September 29th, 2018 God answered my prayer. As I stumbled into a fundraiser in Edmond Oklahoma, I witnessed a group of women who were the real deal. Even my daughter said, mom I think this may be the tribe you’ve been looking for. Beautiful Restoration is their name and their love, support and kindness have pulled me out of the depths of despair.
I am here to remind you that God still answers prayers. There are amazing friends out there waiting to meet you and isolation is never the answer. Step out in faith and trust that there is a plan for your life. My life looks so different now than it did 10 months ago. I have hope, confidence and a real excitement about what is still ahead of me. Never give up. Your dream for a better life could be a day away. It’s coming. Wait for it excitedly.
If you don’t hear anything else today please hear this. Be an encourager. There is power in your love and your words and they can lift someone up from unspeakable despair. When life tells someone who they will never be, remind them of who they are. When life says you can’t, stomp your foot and throw your hands on your hips and scream “oh yes I can!” You can change the world one life at a time. When no one else believes in him, tell him YOU BELIEVE in him. When no one else sees her, let her know you see her struggle and you are there to help her carry the weight of the world. Be a gift to someone today…everyone. Do you have any idea how much power you have to make the most profound difference in someone life?
Oh my goodness. I hear it. I see it. I feel it. The absolute panic caused by clinging to such worldly things. Negativity is a deadly, toxic disease. It goes after the spirit and it snuffs out the light until all that is left is fear and hopelessness. How do we contain it when people are having real, physical meltdowns because they don’t want a particular person in power or because the world does not reflect back what they think it should? When did we become so consumed with the shallow and sign up to fight a battle that is a distraction from the real war? Where are the voices that lift us up? Where are the hopeful, the joyful, the grateful? I can’t hear them because the small tribe around me has become infected with the poison. It bleeds out in their thoughts and their words as I draw my shield to protect myself from the damage. I have found a new “support” group that I meet with once a week. It is a space of healing and support. It renews my hope and stirs a peace and love beyond my comprehension. We all need a group or a person or a place who tugs at us long enough so that we can stand tall. We are warriors and we must drown out the dread and breathe hope and healing into the souls who are lost and broken. Step into the light and show yourself so your light can join with the Universal light and ones who choose to be blind can no longer ignore this beacon of hope.
You are meant for more than pettiness and smallness. You are meant to do great things and to share your peace and love with the rest of mankind. Be the light. Share the light. Spread it far and wide and remember the power it has to bring about the most profound change. Do it now. We need you.
I am so grateful my son gets excited about random acts of kindness. Today I got a text from him explaining to me what happened during lunch. Starting this year, the kids are allowed to leave campus and eat at the local restaurants. I know like most parents, my husband and I give Chase an allotment and it has to last him all week. Realistically I know it’s near impossible so somedays the kids eat fries or split something. Today they walked a half mile to a local fast food place. All the kids were eating except for one when the manager approached and asked why? She explained she was out of money for the week and the manager brought her a small bite to eat adding that she couldn’t go all day without eating. Some may find this offensive but to me, this is humanity at its best. My son was very moved at her concern and kindness and I can only hope that this is something that someday he might pay forward. All it takes is one person to notice and care enough to make someone’s day a little bit brighter. Thank you to the kind women who offered such hope in a time when hope seems sometimes lost. There is no doubt we will share the word and fully support this local business. Thank you for being the change we so need in the world. This is the America I grew up in and love. This is the America where we have one another’s back and reach out through our community to take care of one another.. This is the America where kindness and compassion are practiced each and everyday. Yes, there is hope and today it came from a manager who sent this wonderful ripple out into our community.
I think I’ve decided you can’t fix stupid. You can’t reason with it, change it or even influence it. Much of what is going on in our simple little world is just plain stupid. We say whatever feels like rolling off our tongue, we insult and demean with no consideration of who is on the receiving end. We spew our opinions as if they hold more value than anyone else’s. It’s disheartening to watch. I feel I have so little power as I sadly watch humanity, respect and civility self destruct. My prayer is simple. Raise me up above the petty nonsense that destroys relationships and even lives. Raise me up above the need to be right or louder or better or smarter. Humble me to know my place in this world is not less or more important than anyone else’s. Help me hang on a little bit longer and share whatever I have left to give. Help me shine and be a beacon of light in a world where the light is sometimes fading and growing dim. Help me be a better person each and everyday. That is my purpose. That is my journey.
You can change your life.
I know because I did it.
A year ago, I was in a very dark place. Depression had a death grip on me and I was having frequent anxiety attacks. I was so unsettled in my own skin but the hopelessness I felt was one I thought I would never escape. I was helpless and I reached out but there was no life raft waiting for me as I slipped deeper and deeper into despair. I tried depression medicine and meditation but it only got worse.
A year later I am feeling back to my normal self. I had to change my self talk which eventually led to a change in perspective about my current situation. If I couldn’t change the part I was stuck in then I had no other choice than to change myself and use my perception to gain my power back. My mantra was “the sky is not failing”. You are okay. It took months to convince myself that I would survive my situation. That I could live a happy life right alongside the mess I was in. I decided to lessen my reaction to things that once sent me straight to panic. Ah yes, the sky is not falling and this is only temporary. Patience with myself and gentle reminders turned into a new sense of peace and confidence. I removed myself from negativity and the past few months I have started walking every day. I am up to 35 miles a week and there are no words to express what this has done for me mentally. Most days I feel happy. Did you hear that? Me, happy! And rarely do I feel anxiety for more than a few hours and it doesn’t happen often at all.
Was It easy? Nope. I had to give up my bullshit stories that kept my anxiety alive and thriving. I had to admit that my thinking was most of the problem and the only fix out there was my decision to fix myself. I share this story because I know the silent suffering and wanting someone to take just a little bit of my despair away so I could get through the day. I also share this to tell you that you can overcome this too. It takes patience and a great deal of self love. I hope my success story becomes your own and please know you are not alone. I am out here cheering for you and I know you can do it too. You’ve got this! I promise.
I went to another concert last night. I was left with this image of the entire arena filled with individual lights. It was a beautiful sight. Sometimes I don’t see the light in others because I don’t want to look hard enough but last night all I saw was light. What an amazing feeling. One that left me full of hope. What was your glimmer of hope today?
Don’t get caught in the current today.
Rise above it.
You are love.
You are peace.
Offer yourself as a refuge to those with a heavy heart.
Be a spark of hope.
Lead the charge.
We expect so much out of life and the people around us. Today, be the unexpected. Be the smile, the kind voice, the helping hand that reaches out when no-one else does. Be kindness, offer motivation and be the reason someone feels a tiny sparkle of hope. You can change the world one small act of kindness at a time.
Before I pick my son up from school, I walk at the local YMCA. The track is located above the basketball courts where the after school program takes place. There are kids yelling and running and bouncing. To be honest, after coming directly from yoga, the noise and the movement really gets on my nerves. A week ago I walked into the restroom where two little girls insisted I go first. They were chatty and smiled at me through missing teeth. I smiled back half heartedly. Yesterday, they met me there again. They told me they watch for me so they can come and say hello. This time, I knelt down and I looked them both in the eyes. I am very happy to see you both today I said through a warm, inviting smile. See you tomorrow then?
It takes one person to warm your heart. One person to show a kindness you didn’t notice before. Look for the blessings. They are there waiting for you to notice. Those little girls made an enormous difference. I am so grateful for them.