I’ve been blessed with a lot of emails and comments over the last few weeks for some reason. People who are going through struggles, or heroic caregivers must be some of the deepest, most painfully honest people I have ever known. As always, if these posts help you or can help others, please share. There’s never any ads and it’s the only I know I’m helping those in need – Steve
I received one from a person in a lot of pain who said we could try to tell people what grief feels like, but we can’t put it into words and I could try, but it’s a waste of time. He finished with good luck, and I believe he meant well.
He also taught me something. When it comes to soaking rains and their effect on plants and streams, there’s a funny characteristic. You’ve heard of flash floods, we even witnessed one in Las Vegas once where something like 1/3″ of rain fell and the streets were really flooded. If you’ve been to Vegas, you know its A) Flat and B) Sand EVERYWHERE, plenty of places to soak in.
Rain always soaks in better if the soil is already damp, and always runs off if the soil is bone dry. So when I thought of this young mans mail, I realized that grief mentioned is unintentionally preparing the person to receive the hope. That people in different stages of stress/hopelessness or grief let 100% happy thoughts roll off like water off a ducks back. Gotta be realistic if you want to help somebody.
I’m thinking Barney’s song is 100% happy, but I’ve been tempted to throw the tv through the window, even when I’m in a great mood!
But I took his comment to heart. It’s been bothering me, wondering if expressing my grief and ultimately hope (is the goal)in this fashion is worth the effort and helping anyone.
When I think of the nurses and doctors in Waconia, the hospice people, the unending parade of tragedy must bring them down, but I didn’t see it. Even the moderators of the cancer sites, grieving sites, widow groups, certainly knowing in many cases the most anyone can hope for is a temporary stalemate of the situation
Then I remembered this story from one of our Rapport Leadership weekends. Some of you have heard it I’m sure, but it’s in the spirit of the story itself that says to me, if one life is eased a little, WHO AM I to say, stop trying?
One day a man was walking along the beach when he noticed
a boy picking something up and gently throwing it into the ocean.
Approaching the boy, he asked, What are you doing?
The youth replied, Throwing starfish back into the ocean.
The surf is up and the tide is going out. If I don’t throw them back, they’ll die.
Son, the man said, don’t you realize there are miles and miles of beach and thousands of starfish?
You can’t make a difference!
After listening politely, the boy bent down, picked up another starfish,
and threw it back into the surf. Then, smiling at the man, he said
I made a difference for that one.