lately, my heart and mind have felt heavy.
i have been reflecting on so many refugees without homes, on the pain of many in my church precipitated by a recent policy change, on the physical, emotional and spiritual battles that some of my loved ones are fighting, on the many shades of ache being carried around in so many different hearts.
there is so much beauty and joy and love in this world, and i truly believe that the summation of good far outweighs the bad. but the hardship – in its many different forms and measures – of being alive as a human on this earth is very real, and so searing. although my personal struggles are also real and searing in their own right, i have been spared of so much of the grief that many experience. while realizing this makes me feel tremendously grateful, it also causes me to feel abashed.
with all the abundant ways that i am fortunate and privileged, how do i personally contribute to alleviating the deep and complex and exquisite pain of humanity? what is the appropriate balance between shamelessly appreciating my blessings and letting them compel me to help others? how do i graciously and authentically deal with the fact that horrific things are happening in the world while i am living so relatively comfortably? how can i, one person with limited sphere of influence, make the world better?
i don’t have answers to these tough questions, but i am striving to find them day by day. and in the meantime, i’ve realized that it’s not only okay, but really good, to find beauty around me while recognizing the pain. when i find beauty around me, it makes me happy, and i am able to send out happiness into the world. that’s so incredibly trite when set next to the heavy hardship of humanity, but it’s something i can do, every day, and i really do believe it makes a tiny difference, and that it is worthwhile.
so, as i let my mind and heart sag with the acknowledgement of profound human hardship, and try to find ways to legitimately help, i simultaneously find beauty in as many corners as i can. i find it, i appreciate it, i try to absorb it and share it. i let it make me happy and then i endeavor to shine that simple happiness and show simple kindness. and while it is just an infinitesimal drop in a huge, vast ocean of hurt, i hope for ripples and strive to let my drops add up.
and those are my thoughts for this november wednesday :)
some random beauty i have found lately:
the buzz and energy of crowded city streets, thousands of human stories moving around each other // carefully crafted building facades backgrounded by rich shades of gray in the london sky // a look of truest love in the eyes of my husband // the big, bright smile of a stranger when offered a thank you // the bells of st. martin’s in the field pealing in our windows on sunday mornings // forming a connection with people from all over the world that i meet with at work // the absolute perfection of a laduree macaron //
life is devastatingly beautiful.