Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Bad Day / Good Lesson

I am, for the most part, an optimist. Call it innocence, call it a Pollyanna attitude, heck, call it naivete -- but I am, generally speaking, a glass-half-full type of gal. Usually.

Not today. I had a bad day. They can't all be winners; I'm human, after all. I get grumpy and mopey and tempted to set my Facebook status to: "Jena hath the blueth." Today was one of those days.

It was stupid, really. I saw some images of myself that I thought were awful, and I was too lazy to get a handle on my self-talk and the whole thing quickly spiraled into a lively little internal rendition of "Nobody likes me, everybody hates me, guess I'll go eat worms." I think the whole process took about forty seconds or so, and THUD -- just like that, my spirits hit the floor. Fickle, these silly human-being emotions of ours. One minute, we're humming; the next minute, we have the blueth.

The thing that was frustrating about the whole deal was that this is so not new to me. I've been down this road before, and pulling myself out of these such potholes "should" be a snap by now. So, take the depression and self-pity and then pile a little guilt on top, and you have a recipe for a pretty bleak day.

UNLESS . . .

Unless you take isolation out of the mix. Which, because God is merciful, I was able (or forced?) to do. As God would have it today, I ended up in a discussion with a dear friend of mine, a friend whom I recently had the privilege of taking by the hand and walking toward Christ. And today this friend -- this friend who is now a sister (insert chills here) -- happened to be in the right place at the right time, and I confided in her, from the trenches. I was real. I told her what was up, what the struggle was, how silly I felt about the whole thing. And she responded in the most beautiful way I could have imagined.

She fed me the word of God.

She with whom I spent those hours several months ago, encouraging her with scripture, did me the ultimate favor of reminding me of those very transforming, life-giving truths. She searched her Bible and sought out wisdom for me, applicable to the battle I was fighting between my ears. And she did a darn good job of it.

And gradually, assuredly, my perspective was renewed. There is something very cool about the reciprocity of it all -- the counselee becoming the counselor during a time of need, the people-needing-people, the word picture of iron-sharpening-iron (Proverbs 17:17). This beautiful design of reciprocity and inter-dependance reminds me that we're all in this together, that ain't none of us got it all figured out.

If all's well that ends well, my bad day isn't turning out so bad after all. Because as I go to bed tonight, my heavy heart is lighter and I'm no longer singing myself glum lullabies about eating worms. Rather, I am singing about the amazing, gigantic God who sees into our hearts and knows just what we need, and about the very cool talent He has for placing just the right people in our path.

Nope. I don't have it all figured out. But I know the One who does.


  1. Jena, Once again you got inside my hed again girl! so true- how it just takes the entertainment of one nasty thought to take us down the tubes emotionally! I also am grateful for the people he has placed in my life as well. Most will never know what they mean to me or how they have positivly impacted my ligfe but I do:-)

  2. Jena:
    I love when God uses someone we mentored to turn around and lift us up. He's so clever!