This picture was taken just after I left my first husband. It was justifiable but I did leave him. Afterwards, I felt amazing. It seemed the red carpet rolled out everywhere I went and the stars came down from the heavens to dance with me every night. I was free. But in the early hours of the morning, when my head finally hit the pillow, no one could see my brokenness.
Whoever said, “there is no rest for the weary?” It’s one of those expressions I’ve heard and passed around without thinking of its meaning. No rest for the weary? Aren’t those are the ones who need rest the most? Sounds like a rip-off. I don’t know who said it first, but they lied to us.
Who are the weary? Well, me. I am one of the weary. Not all the time. But I have gone through a few trials in my life which left me weak, depleted, a shell of myself- weary. Our pastor always says everyone is either headed into a storm, in the middle of one, or headed out of one. He’s right. We will all face loss- loss of a job, a person, a dream, a piece of ourselves. And it’s in that brokenness, defeated once again, when I need rest.
What happens when we are weary? Weary looks different on different people. For some, they numb with drugs, some immerse themselves in work, others obsess in the gym, some withhold food, some withhold intimacy, and still others will disappear into a hobby, a passion, a habit. Most of the time, I hide when I’m lost. And I have been broken and lost enough to recognize myself slipping into the pit. I have not yet figured out how to avoid the pit and I always end up at the bottom, looking up, wondering how I got down here again.
It’s frustrating to know loss is unavoidable, no matter how many things I try to control. When I just can’t do it anymore and it’s too much for me to go out in the world and put on a happy face, I hide. Sometimes I search for something to help me prop up a heavy “Happy” mask, to cover what’s really happening. Usually, I turn to alcohol and cigarettes. Marlboro Reds are the main event; beer is just an accessory. And the combination of the two numbs everything just enough to continue functioning. But I am not fulfilled. Something is missing.
Why do we hide when we are weary? Because I don’t feel worthy of asking for help. Because I’m scared what people will think if they really know me. I often believe I have to do this all by myself (mostly because that’s what I’ve been doing all these years). I have been burned by too many people- my parents, my best friends, my husband, coworkers. I can’t trust anyone. So I hide…
…until I get fed up and think, There has to be another way!
Why can’t we be transparent without fear? Why can’t we just say we don’t have it all figured out? Why is it more acceptable to advertise lies than to reveal the truth? Why can’t we lift each other up when we need a hand? Because we have been programmed by a world of lies.
It wasn’t until my time in ReEngage that I had ever even heard of a safe community. We all need a safe place to go- a place to come as we are and to be fully known and fully loved. Without God’s love and grace, that place doesn’t exist. I want to carve out a sanctuary here for the weary. It’s my mission and I hope you’ll join me.
“Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” Ephesians 5:29
Jesus said, “Come to me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28
“Jesus answered, I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6