Sunday was typical except that no Sissy meant we could sit up front in the chapel at church instead of the back on a side pew. We like to trap her in so there's no running up on the stand or rolling around in the aisle.
I can pay attention better when I am up front. In the back, I get busy checking out who's wearing what, coveting someone Else's beautiful dress, or what kids are being so cute. Basically my ADD kicks in and I'm generally a lost cause.
Yes, the speakers were great this week, but unfortunately I found my mind wandering again. I happened to look at a woman sitting a few rows ahead of me. I know her, but not well. I am aware of a few of her trials, but not in detail. We exchange pleasantries but don't share secrets. This time, I happened to look at her, but a little deeper. Somehow, I could feel her heart ache.
I thought about the things I DID know she struggled with, and they are many of the same every day issues we all have. But, for some reason my heart hurt extra more for her.
You see, I know heartache. I know it up close and personal. We've been acquainted too many times in my life for my liking, but that's a part of life.
Most of us do in some form or another. I felt compelled to help her. How could I though? We aren't good enough friends for me to just approach her and say something. No..... my assistance would be silent for now. Prayers on her behalf.
My thoughts focused on heartache. You know that feeling that your heart is going to burst because you are in so much emotional pain? The feeling that it's even hard to take a breath because your chest is swollen up and breathing seems so taxing. The loneliness of not being understood. The isolation of keeping it all to yourself, for fear that if you verbalized your feelings, someone might haul you away in a tight white coat to a padded room. That kind of heartache. The kind you think will never, ever end.
I thought of her. I could feel it. I started to think of so many others that I knew of or had an inkling of their struggles. Some friends, I know first hand of their trials, having experienced similar things, and others I can only imagine since I haven't been called on for that particular trial. But, I think the heartache might be the same. Crushing. Overwhelming. All-consuming. The despair that it oftentimes brings with it.
My thought was this: I might not know YOUR particular heartache, but I know heartache and can that be enough to help you? I know the feelings, can that be sufficient to succor you in some way?
I also know that it will end. The pain will lessen, the hurt will soften, the sting will appease. Maybe not today, or tomorrow, but it does and WILL get better. Can my knowledge of that be enough to give hope to you?
The thought of someone dying on the inside, alone and feeling isolated, is too much for me.
So again, I implore.............I don't know YOUR specific heartache, but I know heartache. Can that be enough?