opportunity.

letter oThe old saying “when life gives you lemons make lemonade” used to be so trite to me. It always seemed to be a pat answer from happy-go-lucky people who didn’t have a lot of pain in life. Now I see things differently.

I’ve learned this: opportunity comes from pain.

When we’re in the middle of a crisis or tragedy, we are not thinking about opportunity, and that is okay.

But eventually, we find we are so much more empathetic and compassionate towards hurting people. And that can only be a good thing.

Additionally, many have pursued training or volunteered in organizations which assist individuals who need help. It can be incredibly fulfilling and healing.

Photo credit: desertdutchman / Foter / CC BY

Photo credit: desertdutchman / Foter / CC BY

~~~

nature.

the-letter-n-jason-wright

Most of the tundra is located north of the Arctic Circle – in the Frigid Zone – the coldest regions of the earth.

Rich Reid and Norbert Rosing

As winter approaches, the nights grow longer and colder as snow and ice cover the earth. The ground freezes solid.

Desolate. Barren. Empty.

Pain is like that.

But then-

Who knew this far removed region of the earth would dance with color? About 400 wildflower species announces to the world that desolation is only temporary.

The existence of pain does not mean God isn’t real. We accept winter and spring. One does not negate the other.

The arrival of spring brings comfort and tells us that God is with us.

Read nature! It helps explain life.

~~~

mothers.

letter MNo one knows the burden of a mother’s heart … except another mother.

You smile when you’re heart is heavy. Why? Because you don’t want your child – whether young or old – to know you’re hurting. We just can’t seem to venture beyond protection mode. It’s just the way it is.

I can’t comprehend (really, I can’t) how a mother can live her life without God being her strength. Because just as the joys run deep, so do the sorrows. And with some things, no one can hold her up but God.

Maybe your child has a chronic or terminal illness. Maybe your teenager is involved with drugs and/or drinking. Maybe your adult child is having marital problems or going through a painful divorce. Maybe your child died.

Photo credit: Lars Plougmann / Foter / CC BY

Photo credit: Lars Plougmann / Foter / CC BY

There is suffering in the world.  Yet, many carry sorrow with strength and dignity.

Are you a mother who is hurting? Look in God’s direction. He has helped me. He will not turn away from you.

He will call upon me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble.

-The Bible

love.

letter lA four-year-old child whose next door neighbor was an elderly gentleman had recently lost his wife.

Upon seeing the man cry, the little boy went into the old gentleman’s yard, climbed onto his lap, and just sat there.

When his mother asked what he had said to the neighbor, the little boy said,

‘Nothing , I just helped him cry.’

Photo Courtesy: h.koppdelaney / Foter.com / CC BY-ND

Photo Courtesy: h.koppdelaney / Foter.com / CC BY-ND

God defines love like this:

Love is patient, love is kind.

know.

images (2)What does it mean to know God? Can one know God?

For centuries, religion has made God seem distant and mysterious. But when you read the Bible, you find that God tells us he is very near to us. That’s good news, especially for people who are hurting.

The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

Psalm 34

Photo credit: nexus6 / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA

Photo credit: nexus6 / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA

If you have only known God to be unreachable, detached, distant, or mysterious, today is your day to know He is not any of those things.

You can know all about Him.

Just ask him.

jealousy.

j 2When things are going wrong in our life, we can be jealous when we see the success, happiness, and prosperity of others.

It’s normal.

But you have to change your thinking or else you will be miserable for a long time. Not only that, but if you have the tendency to be jealous, it can make a pattern in your thinking that will crop up the rest of your life. You will become hateful and bitter.

It’s time to nip this one in the bud. We combat it with truth.

Truth: bad things happen to all of us. They really do. You only see the surface of what success, happiness, and prosperity and looks like. When those individuals lay on their beds at night, who knows what struggles they have?

How to change your thinking:

1) Choose to be happy for them. You would want others to be happy for you, right? Begin to think  and even voice your gladness for those people in your life.

2) Be thankful. We’ve all heard it but it really works. Think…even voice…what you are thankful for. It will soon make you content, no matter what your situation is. I know. Some situations are really hard. Like losing a child. Why me? But when you are thankful, the sting of the loss lessens.

3) Accept the pain in your life. Take your time with this one. It’s okay. But if there are changes you can make, do it!

Practice this and you will begin to change how you think.

Don’t let jealousy paralyze you from believing the best for your life!

mrMark: / Foter / CC BY

mrMark: / Foter / CC BY

~~~

isolated.

14864688-Beautiful-spring-letter-I--Stock-Photo-alphabet

Sometimes it feels like we are all alone.

We may think that no one understands us and so we isolate ourselves.

©kathleenmoulton

©kathleenmoulton

It’s healthy to have some time to pull away and rest our souls.

It’s not healthy to stay there.

Be aware of self-pity:  a feeling of pity for yourself because you believe you have suffered more than is fair or reasonable.* 

All of us get hurt.

All of us have to work through it.

You are not alone!

tulips1

©kathleenmoulton

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*merriam webster dictionary