I vividly remember one day that my spirit was severely crushed by something my FH (former husband) said to me the night before. I had cried quietly as I fell asleep and we woke up not speaking to each other, something that had become all-too common. After I dropped the boys off at school I found myself in a shopping area parking lot, occupying a space that I ended up sitting in for hours. I felt paralyzed in pain, both trapped in and comforted by the familiarity of my car, Bessie. She has been with me through childbirth, child-rearing, divorce and healing (and I’m happy to report she is still with me today).
I sat in that parking spot for a good half-day, not wanting to go home. At this point in my marriage I didn’t feel comfortable or even welcome there and I honestly didn’t know where else to go. Looking back I wonder why I didn’t take a walk or go somewhere more interesting but I guess I was just stuck in an emotional place that didn’t allow me to do anything else.
I texted a couple close friends that day and talked to my bestie, Ang. I was so heart-broken. I even called my former father-in-law to report on what had been shared and I could tell he didn’t know what to do with me. I shared my thoughts through tears and at one point I even told him that his son needed help. I’m sure he was taken off guard and didn’t fully understand what I was saying.
How ironic. This girl who was the biggest hot mess you could imagine was telling someone’s dad that their son needed help. Irony at its finest. Looking back I realize that pain was literally oozing out of me. My FH would often confront me on me sharing my problems with my girlfriends because it made him feel uncomfortable. At the time I felt justified but now perspective tells me something different. I was so full of heartache and inner turmoil that I couldn’t even help myself…I was desperate for a lifeline so I shared with anyone who would listen.
This idea of things oozing out of us is interesting to me because it almost can’t be helped. It’s like an over-ripe tomato that gets a little poke and then juice anxiously escapes out the side. That’s how we humans behave. We fill ourselves up with something (a thought, anger, an offense, etc.) and when poked, out come the words. Our verbal ooze is simply the overflow of what we have in our hearts.
I love this concept because it means we can also ooze joy, patience, kindness, generosity, empathy, grace, etc. If our hearts are brimming with these things they will OVERFLOW into our lives.
Both of my boys ooze humor, sarcasm and kindness. They ooze other things, too, but that’s a topic for next week. Most days my heart is overflowing with joy…not always, but often. Sometimes I let my joy be overcome with fear. And for me, fear manifests itself as insecurity (lack of control, frustration or withdrawal). Those are my go-to’s when my heart is full of worry and anxiety, and this is one of my favorite Bible verses I pray to combat them: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Phil 4:6-7)
Our journeys are so much about self-awareness and we should daily dissect ourselves to see what needs to be pruned. What is something beautiful that naturally flows out of you? Maybe you are kind or you’re someone who loves to give to and serve others. Maybe you make people laugh. But also, what is something negative that oozes out of you when you are pressured, provoked or prodded? What can you do to start replacing that with something positive?
Matthew 12:34b says that “Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” I encourage you to chew on this scripture this week. Whatever we have “extra” of in our hearts is what we have to give to others. We need to make sure that our surplus offers life and hope because as we give these things, our tanks are also filled.
If you know someone who could benefit from this post, please share. God carved out a path of intense healing for me and I would like to share it with as many people who need or want to hear.