I think there is a tiny part of me who has always believed in the Easter Bunny…..and Santa Clause……and, well maybe, even the Tooth Fairy. But not really. I mean – not really the tooth fairy. I can’t speak for the other two : ) I often refer to myself as Pollyanna with sprinkles of Mary Poppins who isn’t afraid to hunt down a wild animal on a given day if the need arises. Always believing in the unbelievable and hoping for those who have none. It has caused me much pain and given me tremendous joy. Blessing and a Curse. Many clients come into the office without it – Hope. Given up…..on life, on their marriage, on their dreams, on finding the one, on having children, on being happy. It’s my job to not only believe IN them – but to hope FOR them when they can’t muster up any on their own. They say we lose hope. I disagree. I think we give it away. When holding on to hope begins to hurt us rather than help us – we loosen our grip. Blind Hope becomes False Hope, and we can’t see how anything can or will be any different.
But It Will Be. It Will Be. Different.
If we do the same things in the same ways we will get the same result. If we want something we have never had, we have to do something we have never done. We have to find a way to Change – either what we are in or who we are becoming. People have worded it in lots of different ways, but the meaning is the same. If we want something different we have to do something different. So why don’t we?
We Stop Believing In Ourselves. We Give Hope Away.
Being in Dallas this past week, I was able to spend time with the ladies who I served beside in Congo, had a wonderful meeting with one of my favorite men who survived the Rwandan genocide and is now running one of the most On-Point organizations of African reconciliation and peace building, and I re-connected with Cindy who started a safe house in Uganda housing formally abducted children.
I Feel My Heart Break a Bit.
Doing some recent research on the orphanages we visited while in Congo, I was brought back to a day…..a day…… We were there at the boys orphanage that housed many former child soldiers, street orphans, and children who had survived a horrific war. They greeted us with singing and warmth. They greeted us with homemade instruments and music. They greeted us with pain. Pain – behind those eyes. Before leaving, two of them- brothers – were going to ask me to be their “father,” wanting to say “mother” but unable to piece the words together correctly. Sitting there, we were on one side of the open-aired pavilion – they were on the other. In the traditional African way of formality, we were each asked to “give a few words.” I was so in awe of soaking them in, feeling the freshness of their heartache as if it where my own, in the “zone’ as I call it – it was now my turn. I looked up at them and they (around 25 of them) looked back at me. “Give them a word”. Translator looking at me looking at them looking at me. I said this, as if not speaking for myself:
“Tell them I am sorry for their pain. Tell them that they are strong”
“Tell them that WE BELIEVE IN THEM”
He did. All was quiet. As it should be. I have realized that there are four words that hold more power than the most eloquent of Hallmark cards and all the length of Tennyson’s poetry.
I BELIEVE IN YOU
I have a secret. I can count on one hand the people who know this (and they would probably be surprised at who they are). During my “dark time” as I like to call it, I would do something kinda weird. Not that me doing something weird is actually strange : ) But it’s kinda – yeah, weird. I had just moved to Boulder, CO knowing one person. Traveled across the country in a very poor state of mind and body. I was alone. I wanted to be alone. Far away. So I would do this thing.
I would pass by the cards in Target or Walgreens, and I would read them. I would pick out the one that I thought God would give me if he were there. I would buy it and sign his name and carry it around with me. It was a desperate time and called for desperate measures. How am I able to be so vulnerable about it now? I am better : ) Looking back, it spoke to my desperate need to be encouraged. To feel loved. To somehow hear him whisper, My Daughter:
I BELIEVE IN YOU
Even when I didn’t believe in myself. It was then that I realized the power of those four words. So I take that message and I tuck it away in my heart and I come to this:
In our most desperate, hopeless, lonely times….. whether we have lost our jobs and are wondering if we can provide for our families, or we are a new mother who is about to have baby number two in the middle of chaos, or making every attempt to “hold it together” “turn it loose” or “live in the moment.” Whether we are an orphan who has nothing but the memories of brutality and a broken heart, or someone surrounded by everything they have every dreamed of…..along with a persistent and ongoing emptiness that follows them around in their Hollywood lifestyle. There are four words that he wants all of us to hang to, hold to, live on. Close your eyes. No, really. Close your eyes and Listen with your Heart. Hear Him Say.
I BELIEVE IN YOU
Weird? The weirdest. Almost as weird as buying yourself cards from God in the middle of the Rocky Mountains. But I still have them all…..and I wouldn’t give them up for the world : )
Believing – I am