If you’re reading this, I’m guessing that you are either bored out of your mind or maybe you’re trying to get out of shoveling more snow! Listen, I may not have a “I’m going to share this with my friends” type blog, but I still want to take the time to share my thoughts that, hopefully, make a difference. I pray my passion to help others and my experience will seep through my words and reach out to those who need it.

Just like you, I have a heart that has been hurt, loved, scarred, challenged, deceived, comforted, changed, and saved. Thankfully, that didn’t all happen in one day. Even though some days feel like you’ve been challenged and stretched in every way possible, I thank God that He gives us time to absorb life lessons and grow. His lessons have been stretched over many years for me. Some were pretty challenging and I probably flunked the first thousand. No exaggeration Ha. However, I’ve learned that we have a patient Creator. Very thankful for that.

Backstory: My mom suffered from a phobia that’s called agoraphobia. She wasn’t formally diagnosed — I just assume that’s what she had because of how she lived her life from her early 40’s until her death. If you’re not familiar with it, it’s when your anxiety hits the roof because you have a fear of situations where you might be embarrassed or feel trapped – especially in a large crowd. Unfortunately, my mom got to the point where she basically stayed in her bedroom. The door was usually open, but sometimes it was closed. She occasionally came out to the living room at the end of the day, but she hardly ever went outside of the house. Some days she was fun to be around, however, other days ‘I’ wanted to be the one who closed the door to my room.

She wasn’t aways this way. It seemed to begin in my teen years. I’ll never forget the day that she sat me down and explained that she and my dad were getting a divorce. It was my last year in elementary school. I had the option to stay with my dad or move out of the state with her. I chose my dad. For whatever reason, she returned to our home about a year later. That’s when she had a nervous breakdown. Needless to say, she no longer invited friends or family into our home – including her own mother.

How does this relate to today? As far-fetched as it may seem, I think many of us have established safe boundaries or places — maybe not to the extreme where we stay in our house, but we know where that place is. I admit, I put up walls all the time when I’m around someone who is intimidating or tends to come across like a bull in a china shop. If I know someone with that personality is going to be somewhere, I make sure I’m not. I’m sure it has something to do with my past and how my mom protected herself from being hurt, embarrassed, or criticized by others who watched her from afar. I’ve had those experiences. It’s something you never forget.

What I’ve learned through all of this is this: When someone truly cares about you, they don’t watch from afar and pick people apart. That’s not the example Christ set for us. That’s not love. Like the saying goes, “What you say about other people says way more about you than the people you talk about.” ~ Unknown (There’s so many different scenarios out there. I’m not referring to venting. I’m talking about living with that attitude that you are better than everyone else and making sure others know it.)

The humbling and most Important lesson I’ve learned is that it’s not about what I think. It’s all about what Jesus knows. Show them Jesus.

2 Comments on “XOXO”

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