Continued from Part III:
When you start looking for things to be thankful for, you’ll be surprised at what emerges. Try it!
Self-pity equals wrinkles
Think of the most beautiful lady you know. I’m going to guess that she doesn’t spend much time pitying herself, but that her face is turned toward the light, and that she shines even when she’s honest about hard things.
There’s very little virtue in chirping “I’m alright—everything’s fine—who needs a man anyway?” I’m always on a search for emotional honesty because it’s at that point that truth can start soaking in, change us, and bring us to freedom. It’s ok to tell God that you’re tired of waking up alone and that it stinks to go to weddings alone. God’s big enough to take any rants you have. I hope that you also have a few friends with whom you can be honest. It’s ok to cry. You’re allowed to admit that you grieve a love that has no name or face.
Being honest (Jesus can take it off you!) means being vulnerable but also knowing the truest, most loyal love you will ever know.
You will not know the comfort and companionship of Jesus if you always insist that you’re ok, don’t need any help, and are never lonely.
While I was writing this article, I was drinking coffee in a darling café in Warsaw. (The café’s name was “Między Słowami” which means “among words.” Yes, it was as idyllic as it sounds. I’m very, very rich!) I looked up suddenly, and across the room, a tall, dark man was watching me. He was so handsome, I stopped breathing for a minute. He was too far away for me to see any emotion in his face, (Interest? Curiosity?) but a wave of something washed over me because suddenly I wanted to be noticed, delighted in, seen as beautiful, because no man does that for me.
Being honest about the voids I feel is ok, but I couldn’t stay there, and left the café when my coffee was finished.
Admitting and acknowledging loss is healthy, but staying in the place of endlessly verbalizing everything that’s wrong in your life will make you ugly. Guaranteed. You’ve got a choice, no matter where you are, to wither into bitterness, or bloom into joy. Emotional honesty is one step in the journey. Choice is another.