I'm normally a very upbeat optimistic person. I tend to have a view that the glass is half full opposed to half empty. But there have been a few times in my life, that I can count on one hand, when I've become depressed for a time. I've always come out of it and it never lasted for years, but months.
I wrote a post recently called "Why You Should Read Heart Choices". One of the points I mentioned was that I was learning to be more transparent and real.
I wrote a post titled "Being Transparent and Real" on August 3rd because I really wanted to know how others felt. What we write on our blogs is out there for all to read. I tend to be somewhat private about certain things in my life. But I do believe that there are times when revealing something we're struggling with might help someone else. And for me, it helps to know ...I'm not alone.
Everyone who looks happy on the outside doesn't always feel that way on the inside. I spoke with my sister Christine yesterday about this very thing. She is a very optimistic outgoing personality. She also views life from the glass is half full mentality. But she's gone through so many trials in her life, including a very real challenge with her eyesight from a partially detached retina. She still must adhere to a strict schedule of positions to allow the retina to reattach and doesn't yet know the outcome. But Chris' faith has been growing through this latest trial. We've been able to talk about what we're each learning.
And last week, I got reacquainted with a family friend from Charlotte, NC. Lauri and my sister Christine used to play together as children. Our parents were good friends. Her mom was a bridesmaid in my parent's wedding in 1950. When Lauri read about Christine's eye surgery, she sent a card of encouragement. Chris read to me what Lauri wrote on her card as she was so touched by her kindness. The photo above is of Lauri with her daughter Jessica. Aren't they both so beautiful?
My mom always had a smile and a joke for everyone. Unless you really knew her, you'd never know how much pain she suffered inside her body. It was only when she was with those closest to her, would she let down her guard. She never wanted to spoil anyone's fun by talking about pain and suffering.
I've found that in the midst of these difficult times ... God is faithful.
I had one of those very down days this week. Normally I write my Thankful Thursday and Fitness Friday post weekly. But I didn't even have the energy to participate this week. Instead I took a time of rest, reading and praying. I also listened to Scott Samter's online Bible teaching from 1 John which is all about love.
During the course of the day, I had phone calls from three of my closest friends (Helen, Terri and Sue). They didn't even know what was going on with me that particular day. But each one offered encouragement, prayer and a listening ear. They didn't judge me for feeling the way I did. But they also reminded me of who I was; a dearly loved child of Almighty God; my Abba Daddy. My friend Jamie from San Antonio sent me an ecard and I got an email from one of my newly discovered relatives, Bill and Sharon Sumstad on that very day. How could I ever doubt God's love? He uses His people as His hands and feet in this world.
I have the most awesome bloggy friends and I'm so thankful for them. Lisa, Jill, Noreen, Lori, Debra, Iris, Jennifer, Sandy, Edie and so many more ...I thank you! I know I'm missing more of you but you know who you are.
Oh and by the way, I got an email from Sarah Dawn of Splashin' Glory. She's pictured above with Jill of Forever N Ever N Always when they had their surprise get together last week. Don't they look fun? Sarah Dawn and I are trying to find a day to get together too. That will definitely brighten my day. If you've never visited her blog ...you must stop by and say hello.
Gosh, just writing this post has actually helped me. When I focus on all of the wonderful people the Lord has brought into my life, I really am thankful. And the smile does return to my face and it's genuine. Yes, life still holds many challenges but God is faithful and good. There's nothing like being refreshed by Him.
(Photo Credit of sleeping woman: Mihaly)