Monday, 24 September 2018

It Is OK To Fall.

Last week, more than once, I have completely and utterly got it wrong. I have let everything overwhelm me and reacted in a way that was completely unacceptable. My reaction was a demonstration of how not to behave.

My faith tells me that I am not able to do things in my own strength, so I know that it is best when I pause and shoot up a silent 'help me!' prayer. However, on one occasion last week, it seemed that even praying out loud was not even helping. The thing was, I wanted things to change in an instant. In that moment, I wanted to be all calm and peaceful. Instead I seemed to be falling apart even more! I had found myself at a place where I just did not know what to do.

Help did come and I think I needed to be reminded that I do not have to do everything on my own. I had wanted to be able to pull myself together and get on with what I was supposed to be doing. That didn't happen and perhaps it didn't happen because I needed to fall, and then admit, in that moment, I had failed. I needed to hear the good big sisterly advice I was given and accept the practical, loving support I was shown.

I know that I fall on a daily basis and I am grateful for each new day to begin again. However what I seemed to have convinced myself, is that when I fail, when I fall, I must get up without asking for help.

It is OK to fall. It really is. What is not OK is to allow myself to think that I am a failure. Yes, in that moment, I've messed up. However, that should not determine how I think of myself for the day, week, month, and so on.

By acknowledging I fall, by being honest and real and admitting that, in this moment, I haven't got it all together, I allow those around me to see the reality of my life. I see the wonder of those people around me, being willing to get involved in the mess too. They help me get back up, dust myself off and try again. Also, I must consider whether I need to say sorry. It's OK to fall. It really is. What is not OK it to knock others down as I fall. If my reaction as I fell, hurts others, then I must say sorry and I must look to the One who holds me, to find the strength, so next time I fall more thoughtfully, trying not to knock anyone else down.

Saturday, 1 September 2018

Here And Now

This time last week, we were travelling home from our holiday in North Wales. A week and a day before that I was feeling overwhelmed by our holiday in North Wales. So many why's and worries.
Would we cope with a car journey that was nearly 300 miles? Would I remember everything? Would we all get on? Were the children going to enjoy themselves?
And, so on.

All these thoughts were running through my mind, when, instead, I should have been reading. I gazed at the words on the page, not even taking them in and let my mind race along with all these worries. Then I looked up and, because I was sat outside, I saw it. A cross in the clouds.

In that moment, it was where I needed it to be. Not a coincidence. Clouds move, I am usually looking down and reading. Yet in that one moment, I look up and I see - really see. I am letting these thoughts and concerns of things that may never happen steal my peace.
As I looked up and fixed my gaze on the cross in the clouds, my mind was flooded with much brighter thoughts. I have the strength to do this because God has placed that within me. Worrying about the week would get me nowhere. I could plan and have things in place to help me through the week, however, really, I had no idea what the week would bring. The picture that was in front of me reminded me that life should be about the here and now. Instead of worrying about what might come, I should make the most of each new day, for it truly is new and with a change of mindset I am able to see that.

So, I made the choice to leave the worries in God's hands, for there is no better place. I turned my thinking around - we were off on an adventure, we would get there OK for we were covered in prayer (thank you) and our satnav lady was always very helpful! I reminded myself that it is a privilege and a blessing to be able to go on holiday. We would journey through each new day, seeing it as an opportunity to make memories or to just simply enjoy being together.

In that moment, with that perfect picture in front of me, I determined that the next time my thoughts overwhelmed me, as they surely would, I would pause, look up and appreciate all that was in the here and now.