Losing Heart and Finding It


I had this post I was all set to write today, and then I sat down in front of my computer and read two news stories before clicking over to my blog. One was about the ten-year-old girl here in Colorado who has been missing since Friday. The other was about the mother who glued her two-year-old's hands to the wall and beat her. I read those stories, and it was like happiness just vanished from the room. I don't know about you--but I don't handle these kinds of stories well. In fact, Jeff always tells me not to read or watch the news because it affects me so strongly. I can't help it. I don't read stories like that and then forget about them an hour later. They haunt me. I cry for days. I've been praying for that little girl Jessica (the one who's missing) ever since Friday when I saw the Amber Alert flashing on the highway. My heart literally breaks when I read stories like the one about the two-year-old. Breaks to the point where I weep.

Sometimes you can be just going along, having a regular day, when you hear something that reminds you that we live in a world with seriously evil people who do bad things, and also really good people to whom bad things happen to. That's a sobering thought that can stop you in your tracks and fill you with doubt or fear. I read a blog post today by Julee; she's just a regular mommy blogger like so many of us, but this weekend while we were cooped up over at my house, Julee's husband died in a car crash. Absolutely devastating and my heart hurts to hear it.

Closing our eyes to the pain of others might help us walk through our daily lives feeling fine. But it doesn't help anyone else. When I first started learning about human trafficking, and I was completely horrified, a friend told me, "Just don't think about those things or it will make you crazy." It's true that that kind of evil and sadness does make me crazy, and letting it consume me is not the answer. But I can't be someone who pretends it's not out there. There needs to be a balance. I tried not to think about that missing girl, since I felt so overwhelmed with sadness, but on my way to work this morning, I thought, What if that were my child? (Even the thought is terrifying.) I would want everyone to be thinking about my child, to be looking for her, to be praying for her. How devastating to think that people would be trying to ignore what happened to her, to think of happier things when my whole world had stopped? I realized I don't need to try not to think about it. I need to keep praying for that family. That's absolutely what I need to be doing.

I feel very blessed in my life. I was raised in a very happy home with parents who loved each other and loved me and still do. And now I live in a happy home with a husband and children who love me and whom I adore. No, it's not perfect. I don't think I ever expected perfection. I did expect joy through the journey and that's been my experience so far. There is enough joy and love in my life that I can make room to truly care for people who are suffering. That's the kind of family I want my kids to experience, one where we care about what's happening to people, not ignore those things. Jeff is exactly the same way and it's one of my favorite things about him. It matters to him that we care and reach out in ways we can.

Today is a beautiful day. And it's been a good one for my family. But my heart goes out to Julee and her little girl Preslee. And I'm thinking about Jessica. And I'm hoping that little toddler grows up to have a wonderful life despite her rough beginnings. And all of those things add up to who I am and want to be as a person.

Today I will hug and kiss Jeff and our little darlings and feel oh-so-grateful I have them with me. And I will pray for these families that are hurting.


5 comments

  1. Brandy, this is so true. The pain and suffering in this world is too much for our human hearts to bear sometimes. Praying for Jessica and Julee along with you today, friend. Hugs.

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  2. This is a beautiful post! And a little convicting also...so thank you! I know I need to pray for others more and help where I can. I had never read Julee's blog before I heard about her husband but it is really affecting me and I'm definitely loving my husband more intentionally and not taking our time together for granted.

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  3. It is sad. I went to read Julee's post. Thank you for sharing. I believe it is so important for us to acknowledge our blessings. It's easy for us to lose sight until we read about terrible things.

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  4. EXACTLY how I feel and where I am in my life and beautifully written out in your words.
    Goodness, what a post.

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  5. I also get teary-eyed over some of these stories and the heartache, but you're right that we can't just ignore the pain around us. It might make life seem sunnier, but it's a disservice all around. Thanks for your reminder not to close our eyes but to pray instead!

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