It’s not often I spill the tea. I’d much rather savor a warm Orange Pekoe Spice Blend of it with a hint of Earl Grey, while my pinky is slightly lifted and my head tossed ever so gently back. Anyhow, today I’m spilling some tea (also known as the 411, information, deets, da truth, the business, beeswax and a bunch of other colloquialisms of which I’ve not yet become hip to). Today I’m spilling the tea on how hurting people often feel about happy people. Baby, a person hasn’t smiled until he or she has had to smile for someone who has what was once had or what we want to have, and we need to be, have to be and should be genuinely happy for them.
Is it just me or is it sometimes hard to be happy for others when hurting in the area in which they are happy? This is especially so with the increasing popularity of social media. Pics, posts and timelines can sometimes cause in a tailspin. I know I’m not the only one who has felt this way, or at least I hope. I could tell some stories about smiling on the outside with a bunch of “why not me” on the inside as I mustered through enough internal fortitude to hold back tears and simultaneously saying congrats (congratulations was too big of a word to utter). I can hip you to the game of wanting to shut all the way down on people and social media if I saw one more “I’m getting married. I got a fabulous new job. I went on an exotic vacation. I’m debt free. I’m healed. I have a new house.” post. Not that I’ve lingered in those feelings, but I’d be less than truthful if I said, at times, the raw, initial real emotions stimulated by praying to come out of the negative while a friend is flowing in the financial overflow, or going to a wedding while going through a divorce, or planning a baby shower while baby-less doesn’t sometimes sting like an angry, lower Alabama yellowjacket on a hot August day. It does often sting. Not all the time, but certainly sometimes. And it appears, at least during times where this had been my struggle, that the longer the pain and the subsequent promise I’d been waiting/hoping/praying/believing for as a result of it lingers, the harder the enemy tried to get me to stop sowing seeds of sincere gratitude on behalf of the one who just so happens to have already reaped his or her harvest.
So what is one to do when one struggles with how to stay connected to, happy for, and inspired by those who were a source of joy prior to the pain? That’s a good question. We have to keep on being happy for the ones who are happy. Sorry, it’s not rocket science, even though it may feel like it at times. I have learned that in those times where I was most challenged in this area the decision to be happy, present, and/or a participant in another person’s blessing did one or two things. It helped usher in my own blessing in my area of need or it served as a needed distraction until that said blessing shows up. Both of those pushed me closer to God so it was worth it.
Will there be times where one simply can’t be there like that fabulous wedding with a candy station and photo booth I missed shortly after my ex-husband left? Absolutely. Will there be times where one tries to maintain the same support or presence as once had, but have to make minor adjustments for sanity’s (or your pocket’s) sake? Yes, ma’am and sir. Will there be times one didn’t think he/she would able to do it, say it, be there or be a part and do it anyway with trembling knees or shaking hands then find out at the end of the day or end of the night that all things are possible? Please believe.
Whatever happens as a result of what hasn’t happened yet, that internal, sincere place of being happy for those who are happy has to be there and stay there regardless of where we are and what we’re going through. Why? Because we owe it to those who have been there for us to be there for them as best we can through their stages of rejoicing and celebration and through our own personal stages of our healing, restoration or waiting. Plus, the seasons will change and one day we’ll be able to share the goodness of who God is and what He has done, and we want to be able to operate in and exercise compassion for those who are where we once were because we remember how it felt to be there. Now sip on that:)