A Confession

My soul is weary with sorrow; strengthen me according to Your word. -Psalm 119:28
 
I need to make a confession. I have been having a tough time understanding my role here in Columbus for a month or so. There have been many blessings that have happened since I have been here but at times it feels like the trials are so much more. I miss my friends and the support group that I created in Houston. I miss the members of my old church. I miss teaching and working with the kids at school. I miss my colleagues from school. It’s overwhelming sometimes. When I was in Houston, I missed my family but fortunately, they are much closer now and I’ve been able to visit a few times. That is a great help. So in response, I’ve been trying to take various moments throughout the day and name five things that I’m grateful for in that moment. This is a great practice to have, though. It takes any situation we feel badly about and lets us see where God is in our lives. Sometimes I can only think of one or two things but it still helps get me out of my head about something for a few minutes and usually helps me calm down. I tend to have a lot of emotions even if I’m not always showing them. There have been many times lately where my emotions have gotten the best of me. I forget to walk away. I say what I know I shouldn’t. I try to force issues at times when I know it would be better not to I just don’t seem to be able to help myself. I redirect my emotions toward other things and people. The really crappy thing is that this seems to happen to those closest to you. The ones with whom you have the most to lose or the biggest emotional attachment. Fortunately, I have some very forgiving friends and family. But I want this to change.

So… What do I do? How do I help myself? How do I keep myself in check? To be honest, there is no one answer. Sometimes it is just walking away from a situation. Other times it is remembering to breathe. And still other times it’s, well, I don’t know. What I do know is that I do not always have the best answer for myself. I do know that I need to use these moments to grow. I do know that I need to find God’s grace for everyone. I do know that I need to forgive others and forgive myself for my shortcomings. Often times I feel that I fail at this but my husband once told me, “You only fail when you stop trying.” I try to remember those words as much as I can. I try to remember that taking a break from trying to give yourself room to breathe is not stopping trying. My biggest fault in this is when I fail to see when others are trying. I say fail because there are times where I don’t try to see when others are trying because I’m too caught up in myself and my emotions at the time. When I look back, I can normally see but often the damage has been done.
I don’t have an answer. I don’t know how to help myself in those moments yet. I have no idea that I’m even doing it when it starts, only when it’s halfway through. So I’ll start there and see what I can do.
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. -Isaiah 41:10
 
My five things for this moment:
  1. I have a new and amazing church that I am fortunate enough to work at.
  2. I have time to read again.
  3. I have a forgiving husband.
  4. I have a roof over my head and food to eat.
  5. I know that I am not alone. I know that I will be seen through this with love and grace from those around me and from above.
Take care of yourselves and remember to breathe,
Mike

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