I watch her walk through each day as I have for many years now. She is part of the Walking Wounded- a club no one wants to be a part of. Most of its members seem to arrive on accident. She sees the good she has, every day she sees it. And it makes her so very happy. Yet no matter how happy she is at any given moment, she is still always a little bit sad. There have been times that she has to will one foot in front of the other…just one more step, just one more step, just one more step. I have this deep respect for her, her bravery, her willingness to be honest, her fierce and beautiful faith in her God – a faith that is not bound by her circumstances. From afar I watch her live out this life she has been given and I like her.
Then, as if from nowhere it hits me- I am her. I forget it, you guys. Sometimes I can be moving forward, free…and then I remember what’s happening to us. I remember what we hoped to have, and the injustice that is our reality. There is nothing here that is fair, and yet there is beauty all around.
Aren’t we all characters? Don’t we each have stories? Some living the lives we thought we’d be living and others with lives so very different. Even the happiest of stories has seasons, seasons of stability, seasons of change, times of apprehension for each new thing we experience.
You all have been so kind to me as I share my story with you. We’re just these normal people trying to get through, and we have been encouraged by you more than you could know.
Are you sharing your story with someone? I really think you should. Actually, I think it’s the way God designed us- to do life in community. I know that there are unsafe people out there. Don’t share your story with them. You don’t have to share yourself with every person you meet. You don’t have to create a blog to tell your story to the world. But you should tell it to someone. And don’t deliver it in a pretty package no matter how tempting that can be. Believe me, people can take some grit. They can take the mess. In fact, I propose that it honors them, and makes them want to be honest with you. One of my favorite parts of our mess has been when those dear to me have shared a bit more of their real selves with me. It is a gift that I treasure.
This blog entry is for all of us who are living out lives different than we expected. If you fall into that category tonight, know this: I am aware of you.