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Words from the wilderness: the encouragement of pain

[I have been stuffed full of words for so long, I thought they would pour out of me onto this blog, but this week, as I have been sorting through the thousands and thousands of words I have written over the past year, I got a little stuck.  Which ones do I share first? Share at all? maybe they’re a little bit too dark? Too sad? Too hopeless? Too intense?

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New blog

Welcome to a new blog.

I started journaling before there were blogs – in 1989, scribbling thoughts in a red leather notebook my Aunt bought me with one of those pens that would change colors if you just clicked down on the top. When the internet arrived I became aware that there was a name for a writer like me: a blogger. That was back in the live-journal days – pre-Jesus – dark pages covered with typed angst, encrypted posts to pseudo boyfriends who didn’t care to do the decoding.

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Hello again.

Hello.

It’s been awhile.

Where have I been? Here. And a million miles away.  Sitting at my computer in coffee shops typing words I longed to shout from the rooftops. And curled up in my bed cowering in caverns of darkness and corners of fear.  Facing dragons I suppose I’ve been preparing to fight all my life – facing the rejection I was assured would not wait for me. Facing failure. Facing isolation. Facing me. Facing Him.

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Just this

Just this, fabs.

This is all you have to do right now.  Be. And sit. And rest. And wait.

You don’t have to do tomorrow yet. Just slow down and stop scrambling to get ahead of whatever might be around the corner.  There are hard things there for sure.  Tomorrow holds challenges and obstacles, but today has obstacles enough of its own: starting with the challenge to be in today and not tomorrow.

You don’t have to do yesterday, with all its bumps and bruises and pain and failure and frustrations – that is not what you have to do today.  You just have to do this moment. Maybe how you feel about yesterday is a part of this moment, but yesterday itself is gone.

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4 ways to be there for friends who are hurting

When I was in college I got a phone call in the middle of the night from one of my besties.  She was crying so hard it took me a few full minutes to untangle her words and realize that her mother had died suddenly of a Brain Aneurism.

I remember in the season that followed learning the incredible pain of caring for the grieving.  I remember the horrible feelings of being out of control, of watching someone you love hurt.  I remember thinking, perhaps naively, let me take this pain from her.