Finding Purpose in the Pain

Life is filled with events that sometimes leave us bewildered, like the time when your first boyfriend told you he loved you and you thought that meant forever.   He now lives in Omaha with his wife and five kids.  Or that business opportunity with all the perks and promises that never delivered. Maybe you longed for a future in finance and now a machine just replaced your career of eight years.

We are surrounded by those who are dragging through a life filled with disappointments.  Some have careened off course due to devastating diseases.  As we wander through our community I challenge you to look into the eyes of those you pass and search for a path to encourage.

One of the nights we spent in the shelter, I was sitting on my cot gazing at the sea of exhausted bodies, some already snoring, others silently weeping.  And yet, in the middle of the room I noticed two young blonde girls dancing.  By their structure of performance I could tell they were ballerinas rehearsing a well-memorized performance.  I was in awe at how they could find the strength to do this silently in the middle of the night!  No sound came from them and yet this dramatic ballet was a gift to those of us who were awake and aware that this dance was even taking place.

I later learned that they were a ballet company from Denmark who were due to get on a plane to go home the next day and their passports were left in the home they had been evacuated from.  What a lesson for us all – to see someone in a horrible dilemma digging deep into what they have been trained in to help them push through the fear.  For me that night, they were being a light to fight the shadows of the unknown.

No matter what circumstances we find ourselves in, we must realize there is no need to be afraid.  We have been trained by our past disappointments to handle whatever comes our way.  I so long to encourage and empower others to see that their mess can be their message.  Their disappointments can become their drive to change the world and enhance the hope that sometimes lays dormant in the hearts of so many.  Whatever you may be going through in your life, maybe this is the time for your voice to be heard.  There is always something good that can come out of finding purpose in the pain.

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