Tough as nails, the peaceful warrior

27 04 2015

“I walk onto this field every day without armor or weapons, by choice, and so the risk is that every once in a while, someone will shoot. It happens. It hurts. And it always, always makes me want to quit… Love is not warm or fuzzy or sweet or sticky. Real love is tough as nails. It’s having your heart ripped out, putting it back together, and the next day, offering it back to the same world that just tore it up. It’s running towards the pain, and grief and brokenness, instead of away from it.” Excerpt from Carry On, Warrior, by Glennon Doyle Melton.

Dear friends,

When I was young I grew up believing that pain was a bad thing! A thing to be avoided at all costs. The problem for me was that I was often called an “oversensitive”, emotional child, so not only did I believe that feeling bad feelings was a bad thing, but also I apparently felt them more than others, so this made me a bad person too. My childhood was a good one, loving parents, a great brother, and friends. I had lots of friends, although I was never in the so called ‘popular’ group. This broke my heart. What was so different about me? Maybe if I was taller/prettier/smarter/funnier/more confident, I’d be more popular, right??? At the time, I didn’t realize that my greatest weakness was also my greatest strength. My sensitivity! A few years ago, someone identified the missing link, what I called IT. She called me an empath. An empath, really??? I remember saying, ‘I’d really rather be an athlete, or an artist, or a super-mom’. Please!! She laughed. Nope, Sharice, she said. You feel EVERYTHING, don’t you? You feel the highest joys and the lowest lows… you feel them for others too. Even strangers! Don’t you? Don’t you?

And that’s when I had my light bulb moment!!! I FEEL EVERYONE’s EVERYTHING!!

And so, I started this Running towards it. The pain doesn’t scare me, really. It’s the numbness that scares me. It’s not the opinions of others that scare me, it’s the ignorance that scares me. It’s not even the worst cruelty that scares me, it’s when the worst things we can do to each other are not even perceived as hurtful. It’s like broken is beautiful and perfection is the true enemy.

And so I pray for Grace. Never to judge the judgmental. Never to bully the bullies. Never to run away from who I am, even when it hurts. Because, The Peaceful Warrior runs towards the light, and along the way, she meets other Peaceful Warriors who are running in that direction too. Together, they carry on! They will run a marathon if they have to, carrying that BANNER of Love, Courage and Grace,  no matter how heavy it gets. No matter how tired, or sick, or SAD they get with the world, because my friends, the Peaceful Warrior is as tough as nails!

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