I must admit, I've been a little busy this week and didn't really have time to figure out what to put on the blog today. So, I'm going to share with you what I chose to work on for this year: Compassion. That was the one word that kept coming back to me as I thought and pondered and prayed on it. But I kept pushing it back because, really, what do I do with that? Focusing on "Commitment" last year was a no-brainer for me because I really do struggle with making and keeping commitments. But I feel like I'm a kind and caring person already, maybe not perfectly, but certainly that's not THE most important thing to work on this year. Well, after fighting it for a week, I accepted that apparently it is. And I tried not to be offended by that. (c:
So, then I sat on it for another week, still unsure of how to really put that into action. I mean, okay, sometimes I'm a little impatient with my family members when I think they are being excessively whiny over something. But how can that be my big theme for the year? That's why I didn't share it with you last week. That, and the fact that I really was barely able to cut and paste the post I did manage to make.
Now, let me sidetrack for a moment. January is a hard time for me. I look forward to all of the holidays at the end of the year--A LOT. I look forward to them for pretty much the whole year. And then November hits and life is incredibly busy. It's so fun, but then it's all over way too fast. And then I'm sad. Because I have 11 more long months to wait and the next four of those will be in a cold and dreary wasteland. (HH says I'm a little overly dramatic about this, but I just don't do "cold" very well). This year there is a ray of sunlight in the form of a visit from my cousin whom I love and adore like a sister. Yay! So, I tried to focus on that, but I still felt myself heading downward into what felt like an inevitable bout of depression that I was worried would last until her visit and then come back shortly after.
I've been doing very well lately, so I desperately wanted to avoid that. But I couldn't figure out how. Sometimes I don't feel very bright. Thank goodness for a loving Heavenly Father who never tires of really spelling things out for me. Finally, I made the connection (and remembered this post) and considered the many facets of "Compassion".
Was that a long enough intro? That's what happens when I don't have this all thought out before typing it down. Anyway, as soon as I crawled outside of my little burrow of misery for a moment, I saw all kinds of opportunities for compassion. And that's why I had such a busy week. And it was fantastic! It's amazing how blessed we become when we serve others. For example, one day I was still feeling a bit weak with the slow recovery from the medication, but the needs of several people landed on my plate. There are many things that I can't do well, but one thing I can do is cook. So, when someone is going through a hard time, I show my love and support through food. I remember standing in the kitchen, literally on shaking legs, realizing the hours of cooking and baking ahead of me for what I had planned, wondering what in the world I was trying to do. I'm not trying to brag here at all. The truth is, I kept contemplating different reasons not to do what I was doing, but then the Spirit would remind me that it was important. And I felt the promise that if I did this, I would feel better by the end of the day.
And I did! I felt so much happier than I had in a while. I felt tired, but not the same kind of overwhelming yucky tired from before. This was just like a contented tired. I felt so good about what I'd been able to do. And I felt very blessed because there is no way I could've done it without help from the Lord. My children had even cooperated as I toted them along with me everywhere. It was a day full of miracles, big and small. And I was most definitely the one who received the most that day.
I'm not going to do that every day, or every week, but I am certainly going to keep trying to stay open to opportunities to strengthen my compassion for those around me. I frequently feel as though I am "too busy" to take a break from my daily routine to do something for someone else. But I learned this week, that it's okay to break that routine. And I re-learned that the Lord will make it possible for me to find time to get all of the important things done when I do what He wants me to do. The sad thing is, I can almost guarantee that I haven't learned that lesson for good. Or the lesson about how serving others is the best way to make joy in my life. This week things felt so perfect. I feel so much joy and contentment and I love it! I've been a better mom, wife, and friend. I feel really good about myself. But I've been here before, and then I forget and revert back to my silly, stubborn old ways.
Does this happen to anyone else? What do you do to combat it? Any "tricks" for remembering to do the things that make you truly happy? Any ideas on why on earth it's so difficult to do what makes my life easiest?
Thanks for enduring this rambling and long post. Have a great week!