Lately I've been led to share my life with the people around me. For the most part it's been easy, and I've been rewarded time and time again for my efforts. But I have also begun to realize that my efforts up until now were just not enough.
I had a call several days ago with an old friend and classmate. He was going through a rough time because of changes that were happening in his life. These were significant changes, and without going into a lot of detail, the future of his life was about to take a different direction because of these changes.
As we talked, the conversation quickly turned to the financial aspects of this change, and because I have had some experience with these kinds of change, we talked for at least 20 minutes about how he might protect a good sized chunk of his wealth. As our call continued this financial discussion, I suddenly realized something. We had spent almost all of our time talking about his financial wellbeing, without a word about his emotional or spiritual wellbeing. And while I immediately changed the subject to ask him how he was, and what I could do to help him, I was left with the need to stop and reevaluate the conversation, and what part I should have played in it.
Now this conversation is not nearly as important as what I learned from it, and that's really what this article is all about. This new lesson in life that has weighed heavily on me ever since. You see, practically everyone can share money, or the things money can buy. The only real difference between any of us is the amount. I can promise you that if you do that, you'll be rewarded for your efforts. But it was at this point in time that I realized that it just wasn't enough.
Anyone can open their wallet. But I came to realize in this moment that opening your heart to people and giving them the gift of hope would likely be a much more valuable. Why is this is so difficult? Opening up your heart also requires that you that you share everything else you have hidden in there as well. All the pains and challenges of your life hide that are hidden there like the proverbial skeleton in the closet.
It's important to realize that it is only when we begin to share those mistakes, those things that caused us immense pain in out lives, that we become truly blessed. It's not enough to just open our wallets, we have to open our heart to these people in need. It seems that while the people in our lives might look in some ways to be different than you and I, the fact is we have all shared the same kinds of trials in our lives. And although we may handle them differently, we all need to know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
Someone else in my life recently went through a breakup of a long term relationship. While there is no doubt that ending this relationship was the correct thing to do, still this person's heart was breaking. I had a conversation with this person on one of those many occasions you could see their heart was just splitting in two and they said repeatedly; "you just don't know, you just don't understand." But I did understand, and I did know exactly how they felt.
At my age I've seen many relationships end, but only one rose to the level that I thought I couldn't survive the change. This was a very painful time for me, and I made some very big mistakes because of it. Because of the pain that it caused, I rarely discussed it with anyone. I had locked that skeleton away in a closet inside my heart and vowed to never take it out again.
But it was because of this person's impassioned cry for help, and repeated statements that I just didn't understand, that I opened that closet, and let that skeleton out. I wanted this person to know that they weren't alone. That I had felt the pain they were feeling and lived to talk about it. The jury is still out on whether it helped or not. Sometimes it takes time for our words to really sink in. But I believe that sharing my deepest darkest secrets about what I went through at a time when I felt I had no hope, might just give this person hope of their own.
I know I could have opened my wallet and shared something tangible with them, but I truly believe that it's only when I am willing to share of myself, that I am truly blessed. And truly appreciated.
I hope this article will help you see that we all have something to more to share that our possessions. And it is only when we share out lives, and the painful things we keep hidden away, that we are truly blessed. So now its your turn. Please scroll to the bottom of this page and tell me what you think of this article. If you'd like to post your own stories hear on Th Bristol Line, you can contribute here.
Thanks again for allowing me into your life. I hope somehow my words give you the things you need, and along with them, a little bit of hope when you need it most.