Today, I was reading about mental illness and how to pray for those of us who struggle. There’s a lot to be said about this subject and viewpoints on what this looks like from a Christian perspective. It’s something I hope to dig into a bit more at some point as I’m finding it helpful to talk about in my own journey to wellness and balance. My faith is an integral part of my healing journey. People cope in various ways: food, alcohol, sex, social media, t.v., staying ‘busy’, etc. We all have our coping mechanisms. Jesus is the one I’m learning to turn to first (It wasn’t always that way but that’s another story…) I don’t get it perfect but He’s been my main help with things get bad.
Anyway, earlier today, I was reading some prayers that a woman posted online for times when we can’t find the words to speak for ourselves or for others. How do you pray when you feel sick? How do you express yourself to God when you can’t find the right words? How do you pray for someone when you don’t know how to help?
I don’t have all the answers but there was this one prayer that really stuck with me. The writer prayed for those of us who struggle. That we wouldn’t put on a false sense of happiness or cheerfulness but we’d be honest with what’s going on. It made me think of my blog and I wanted to clarify a couple of things.
I’m not thankful all the time. I choose to be. Honestly, being sad is easier. It’s my default mood and when I need to take time to be sad and acknowledge things are hard, I do. If I can help it, I try not to stay in that place for too long. Sometimes, I can’t help it and more often than not I need God’s help to get me through the rough moments. Thankfulness is teaching me resiliency. I want to rewire my brain to find the blessings and not the bad things. It’s a tool to help me change my attitude. I also find it edifying, not only for myself but I like to think it strengthens others, too. My prayer is these lists of thankfulness are twice as contagious as COVID-19 and spread cheer where it’s needed most.
Idealistic and corny? Perhaps. But I think in times like these, it’s necessary.
With that said, I’m thankful for:
- All the people I’ve visited with this week. Everyday I’ve had someone to talk to and that’s been a complete blessing. I know I’m in introvert but it’s times like these when I turn into an extroverted puppy and I’m just so thrilled to have someone to spend time with.
- With that said, I was in a conflict with someone very dear to me. When I asked them for space for a couple days, they agreed. This means so much to me. And I’m grateful for their maturity and understanding.
- I’m going to be working at London Drugs again! I’ve worked there on and off for, like, five or six years. Honestly, it’s home to me. When I tell people that, some of them think I’m crazy because it’s retail but the people there are really great. Their company has been named one of the top 100 businesses in Forbes and it makes sense. They are ethically responsible in the way they conduct business, choose their products and environmentally-friendly (everything is recycled). And I get better benefits with them than I do as a substitute teacher. My main problem is the way people treat me when I tell them how much I like it there. I like moving and sorting and putting things away. I like talking with people and helping them find what they are looking for. I like sweeping and learning about new products. Maybe after the coronavirus people will see people in retail differently. Regardless of what people think, I’m happy to be back and I’m happy to have something to do.
- The Globe Theatre is doing some planning while everything is closed and people are shut-in. I’m excited to be apart of it and have been thinking about what I want to contribute. I’ve got a couple ideas and I’m SO GRATEFUL to have something to emote. Ba ha ha! Emoting is my jam. If I don’t have a way to emote, I explode. This little project came at just the right time.
- I’m a part of a prayer group out of Hollywood that prays for the entertainment industry. Yesterday, a bunch of us met online to lift up the artist community. There were over a hundred people on the call. When I “arrived,” Karen Covell, the founder of Hollywood Prayer Network, was starting us off by praising God and beginning with thankfulness. She had just lost one of her uncles (correction: it was her brother) to the coronavirus days before. I was having a bad day that day but when I watched the way she prayed, the way she praised God (even when bad things happened), I was so touched. She didn’t talk about herself once. She prayed to Jesus and covered us with blessings and scripture. Most of the burdens I came with had evaporated during our meeting. I was very tired but I left blessed with a full heart.