“An anxious heart weighs a man down, but a kind word builds him up” (Proverbs 2:25).
Do you ever get tired of feeling as if you have to act like you feel good? I find myself doing that from time to time. It’s hard for me to cry in front of someone.
There are times that I’m not holding it all together. I’m not really “joyful always” as Paul tells us. I’m not talking about wearing your feelings on your sleeve and unburdening yourself to strangers and acquaintances. I’m talking about finding some really close friends with whom you can be honest and real.
I wonder how often I miss out on much needed encouragement, empathy, and understanding by not being completely honest. I must remind myself that I don’t need to always be “up” and positive. I need some people with whom I can just be me–warts and all. A burden shared is half a burden. How true!
I have gotten so much from a support group for those with a loved one with dementia. My husband has frontotemporal dementia which is worse than Alzheimer’s and has a poor prognosis. On top of my own chronic disease, I’m his caregiver.
There are times I feel so sad for him–and me. At the support group I can cry and express my anticipatory grief. I get so much loving support and new coping strategies.
How I cherish my friends that I can just be me with. At times I need to swallow my pride and risk being vulnerable. Do you need to cultivate supportive friendships? Ask the Holy Spirit to put people in your path whose kind words build you up. Let others and God be your caregiver. It’s worth the risk and you deserve it for you are precious in God’s sight.
Prayer: Dear loving Father, Sometimes my pride gets in the way of risking vulnerability and not leveling with friends when I so desperately need support. Give me wisdom in sharing those raw emotions when I’m hurting. Above all, how healing it is that You are always there for me. Amen.
About the author:
Jackie Smith lives at the foot of the magnificent Smoky Mountains in Knoxville, TN. She has Sjogren’s Disease and migraines. Jackie had a bilateral mastectomy over 25 years ago. She’s so grateful to be a survivor. Just a few years ago she had to have her colon removed, necessitating an ileostomy. Jackie received her master’s degree in Child and Family Services. While she has never been able to work using her degree, it’s been an asset with her husband, 5 children and 12 grandchildren. Her writing about God’s exuberant love is one of her greatest joys.
When you’re at the end of your rope, can you risk vulnerability and ask for someone to listen or to just be there for you?
This is Tanner Clark singing, “Do Not Be Afraid.” I love this song and if you are a fan of contemporary country music you may especially like his style. The lyrics are simple and I have found them going through my head throughout the day–which is the best reminder of God’s faithfulness to take our burdens. Hope it blesses you today. -Lisa