But behind the eyes of someone near us may be challenges we cannot even imagine.
In the last couple of months, two very dear friends have shared about living in very abusive situations for years. I had no idea what was behind the eyes. How could I have missed it?
These faith-filled, loving, generous women are obviously much stronger than I knew, and they knew a secret. Each of them shared the same one: it's a choice. Life and how we live it is a choice.
Smiling, hugging, giving, masked the tirades and trials and tantrums they endured from ones they had loved and trusted most, all the while choosing joy. My friends talked about deliberately choosing joy instead of lingering over the pain.
My friends are teaching and reminding me of powerful life lessons. Mama used to say that we never know what goes on behind closed doors. For that very reason, can we try to live lives of compassion and empathy with everyone in our world?
They also reminded me that problems are a matter of perspective: there will always be someone out there who would give anything to have our lives instead of their own.
Most importantly, these gentle women speak in words and actions that we can choose the bad and bitter, or we can Choose Joy.
What works for me is to think about my friends's challenges and choices. What works for me is to know women, seemingly like me, are deliberately making a choice about how they live their lives and are being successful at it.
Dear Reader, I wish I could look behind your eyes and listen to your story. I pray that whatever challenges you may be facing today will fade in the light of the Savior of the world, and that you will find joy in Him.
This week I'll be linking this post to Giving Up on Perfect and Coffee for Your Heart.