His heart was heavy. The feelings of being a failure as a husband and a father came flooding into his mind, into his soul. Six months of unemployment was taking its toll and had become overwhelming. It was not the first time he’d been through this yet the weight of his past experiences added to the feeling of failure. Any questions he was asked was seen through a lens of:
“I am not good enough. They see me as a failure. .”
That’s because he could only see himself that way.
One Thursday morning he took what strength was left to rise up and go meet a dear friend for coffee. He needed to talk to someone he could trust because he was completely broken on the inside. He met his friend, shared what was on his heart, and then headed home. As he left the coffee shop he decided he would walk the long way home to get some fresh air and some exercise. As he began his walk he saw a woman he had seen the week before picking up cans and bottles. The week before was the first time he had seen her and at that time he felt he was suppose to stop and give her money.
“No” He had replied within. “I don’t have much myself and I can’t even provide for my family.” And he walked on.
But on this day he stopped. He gently approached the woman and asked her name and asked what her story was, why was she out here collecting cans and bottles.
Her name was Pam. She had made some decisions in her life that were not the best, decisions that put her living on the street. Her son, through a friend, found out his mom was on the street so he came to where she was, picked her up, and placed her into an apartment so she would at least have a roof over her head. Her son paid for her rent every month but Pam had to pay for utilities and food.
Most days she didn’t have enough for food and on this day Pam was hungry. The man only had a few dollars in his pocket but decided to take her to the local grocery store to buy her a sandwich and a drink. He knew he could not help her circumstances but made a decision with what little he had to buy her a meal. She gratefully thanked him not knowing why a stranger would be so kind.
He walked away feeling less broken and a bit braver to face his circumstances. Through helping Pam he knew his circumstances could be worse.
This man is my husband, Lance. I wanted to share this story because there are times in our life when we get stuck in our own brokenness, our own circumstances and nothing seems to help us break out. Often it is through serving others our strength is renewed. When we hear or see someone else’s struggle or hardship it somehow gives us the strength to face our own.
I know many times I have found myself in a place of grumbling and complaining and then I run into someone who is going through worse and they have such joy and are standing brave in their hardship that it humbles me to the core of my very being. Serving others may not solve the problems you have but it will strengthen you and give you the strength you need to continue on your journey.
To be honest, that is what this Live Brave journey is all about.
We each have areas of brokenness and trials but as we share in this journey together we all get encouraged and strengthened; we just need to be brave enough to take that first step. I know that when I read the blogs of the writers on this site I am encouraged. If you know someone who is struggling to overcome refer them to this sight so we can all take this Live Brave journey together. In the meantime find a place where you can serve others it will really help you in moving forward from brokenness to wholeness.
Read more about all of our BRAVE WRITERS here.