What to Do in Times of Crisis

Sometimes the only right decision is to stop making decisions.

When we’re in a state of crisis, we often try to fix things with certainty. We want answers.

But this state of being is akin to quicksand: The harder we try to climb our way out, the lower we sink. The only way to survive is to make no sudden movements, to get comfortable with the discomfort, and to find peace without answers.

We can never glimpse the end of a path, but if we squint hard enough, we can see the next step. We squint by being still and quiet for a few minutes every day, through prayer.

We ignore the big decisions, knowing that they’ll make themselves, and we focus on the small ones. The ones right in front of us.

Crisis comes from the word meaning “to sift”. During times of crisis, if we let it all fall away, we’re left with what matters. What matters most cannot be taken away.

And maybe what we don’t know, we’re not supposed to know yet. More will be revealed. So we just do the next right thing, one thing at a time.

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Why Does Loss Happen?

Why does God let us hurt? Why does He bring us people or animals to love when He knows we’re going to lose them?

Maybe because we don’t love people or animals simply because we’re going to have them forever. We love them because loving them changes us. It makes us better, kinder, healthier, more real. Even if people leave us, or animals die, loving them still makes us better.

So we keep loving. Even though we’re going to lose. Because loving teaches us and changes us, and that’s what we’re here to do. We’re here to become better lovers and to learn how to be loved. So when we get to heaven, we’ll be prepared for the place where everyone loves each other perfectly.

Letting Go

Letting go of an ambiguous loss is often the most challenging and important task we face.

At some point in our lives, we all experience it. Someone important to us isn’t willing to talk. Maybe we need to talk, but the other person needs not to. The more history involved and the higher our expectations for that relationship, the more painful their silence.

Painful events happen to all us. But our real problems arise when we attach to that pain.

Often we have this fantasy that somehow by holding on to our anger, the other person will magically decide to apologize and/or come back. As long as we hold on to our anger, we hold on to our hope. Or so we think.

But while you’re sitting there ruminating, the person in question may very well be out having a wonderful day at the lake. The simple fact that you’re the only one suffering, should be your own best argument for letting go.

Negative attachment is still attachment.

Anger is often the glue that keeps us stuck, expressed as an ongoing obsession about “why” this person has wronged us. It’s human nature to want to understand behavior. But the fact is, it’s hard enough to understand our own, let alone somebody else’s. And we simply can’t force another person to talk to us or own up to “the truth” as we see it.

Sometimes we just have to let go.

A sad ending doesn’t negate the value of a relationship. And while it takes two people to form an intimate relationship, it only takes one to end it.

We have to learn to leave the table when love’s no longer being served.

It’s as simple and as difficult as that.

A Light From Within

People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within. – Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

Relationship Ropes (A Poem)

How long will you let this continue?
Or is the fault on me?
Lost and wondering, hopeful pondering
‘Tis the life I lead.

I wait for you and I wait some more
to hear your howling outside my door
But silence pierces through the room
And all I have are thoughts of you.

Desperation
Anticipation
Angst and doubts
Cause separation

I feel us slipping.
What’s it I’m missing?
Weren’t we just kissing?

Where’s the knot?

While I’m holding on to it
You seem to be letting go
as we both wait to see
who breaks the rope.

Love So Good It Hurts

Have you ever known
love so close it hurts?
Aching inside
Screaming, “This works!”
Dreaming is heavenly
Waking is better
One step closer
to being together.
Earth suits ripping
at the seams
Bursting with feelings
Glowing like beams
With every glance
With every touch
With every look
With every nudge
With every smile
You’re overwhelmed
Powerful leaps
and spells abound.
I never understood
when people used to say,
“It feels so good it hurts.”
But sometimes love is that way.

Circumstances (A Poem)

They say circumstances don’t define you

but they certainly can reveal.

In the midst of crisis,

you’ve become a person who can heal.

A person who can mold and bend,

more flexible than you thought.

A giver and receiver,

blooming from your most vulnerable spot.

Through the tornado and turmoil,

you’ve stood strong like a tree.

And if these circumstances have revealed you,

then I love who you’ve proven to be.

My Hope For You This New Year (A Poem)

My hope for you this New Year

is forgiveness of yourself and others,

revival of what matters most,

relationships with friends and lovers.

My hope for you is motivation,

bigger dreams, and inspiration.

Realistic goals and follow through,

these things are my hope for you.

My hope for you this New Year

is healing what you’ve broken;

repairing, mending, letting go

of all apologies left unspoken.

I hope when you look back to where

 you were this time last year,

you’re in an entirely different place.

Your truest self is ever near.

I hope that you have grown and changed.

With open arms embrace the pain,

search for joy, and new love, too.

These things are my hope for you.

There is No Cure for Hot and Cold

There is no cure for hot and cold.

There is no cure for the facts of life.

If we can stop trying to escape the inevitable alternation of pleasure and pain, we can simply relax and be fully present for the wonder that is our lives.

A Letter to My Husband (I am not married, but I have observed many marriages)

Dear Husband,

Is this what God intended? He made me from your rib, and yet it is you who is making me… humbling me, destroying me… and by doing so, revealing Him.

My dear, though at times it is painful, I promise that I will love you as sure as He has loved me. I will no longer barter or bargain for your love. I will no longer expect, demand, or trade for your love. I will… simply… love… Offering myself to you, again and again at this altar called marriage. And I will do this to my death, though my death it may very well bring…

…God risked Himself on me and so I will risk myself on you.

Love,
Your Wife