"Don't let the storms of life change your name."
Bitter people always blame others. When things don't turn out as planned, when life puts you on pause, when turbulence strikes and the storms of life shake our very foundations. If we are not careful bitterness will settle in and twist our being.
When I lived in Dallas, I had a friend who was a great woman of God. She was mightily used in interceding for families. Her name was Joy. we used to go and really pray for people and saw God deliver them. She was a joyful, encouraging woman to be around.
One day, suddenly over night, Joy lost her husband and only son in a car crash. It was a terrible tragedy. She was truly sad and had all the right to be sad and depressed.
She quit going to church for a while and stopped going to our prayer meetings.
I understood of-course. Her life took a turn for really bad.
One day, about one year later from that terrible event, I saw her in church. She looked angry.
I came to greet her with a hug and said, "Joy, how good is it to see you again, I have missed you!" She stopped me from hugging her, and with a bitterness in her voice she stated to me that she was no longer Joy. She had changed her name because Joy was a stupid name and there was nothing anymore to be or feel joy about. She told me she had come to let us all know that all of the "God" things were fake and that God really didn't want the best for us .
That praying for people was a lie and there was nothing in life that was worth any joy.
I was shocked, speechless. Good heavens I felt such an angry, sad, bitter, resentful person.
What happened to my friend Joy? She no longer was there.
Sometimes life throws us terrible punches. Devastating ones. Unfair ones. But, that is life.
My grandmother used to say that the people that had it good and peaceful all the time lived in cemeteries. That's right. None of us living creatures are exempt from the storms of life.
And I know very well, that some of these storms are like a category 5 hurricane, that leaves nothing standing.
Well, my dear friends, don't allow the storms of life to change your name!
Don't let the things outside of you, contaminate you inside.
I know personally that many times it is very hard to hold on to your sanity and you just want to sit and cry, and wallow in the mire and give in completely to sadness and bitterness.
Sometimes it is hard to want to carry on and sing and laugh again.
But again you must.
I wished I could tell you all I know how to never go though anything bad and devastating. But I don't. No matter how strong we think we are, there are things that happen to us sometimes, that will shake us to the very core of our being. Things that will really get to you.
A series of losses, will affect how you feel about yourself, how you see life, and how you approach the future.
"It is easier for us to see bitterness in someone else than in ourselves".
So here is what I have to do if I am to soar above and function.
At these moments I have to step back and gather myself. I need to retreat for a while and learn to put the past in its rightful place. I have to, on purpose, and with all my strength and might refuse to allow bitterness to contaminate my value and potential.
I make myself smile. I have to be very honest with myself.
At times I have caught myself telling others when they ask me why I am so serious and quiet.
"Well, I am just being very careful now, never again I will be taken advantage off".
The honest truth is that this is a root of bitterness in me. And until I get honest with me and call it by it's rightful name, I will only be deceiving myself and setting myself up for pity and sorrow. And instead of living in freedom I become bound. You will never be free if you don't call these damaging attitudes by it's rightful name.
And you can be justifiably bitter. Like I said, life can throw you punches, sometimes, that will make you bitter.
And, you are not a wimp if you cry, if you get sad or upset or angry or disappointed
when going through these terrible storms of life. You have all the right to feel all these things. However, you cannot and must not give up.
Don't become cynical. Sneering at everyone else and finding fault and blame.
Dare to hope again. Don't let fear settle in. Don't be afraid to love again.
Take courage to live. Shake bitterness off and out of your life. Recognize when you are acting upon it. Become thankful for all you have.
Make it a point to smile and love life.
Today make it a point to be free from all bitterness.
This is Mariam wishing you, my dear friend, wholeness from My Ami to yours!