Musings From A Musical Mind

Posts tagged ‘A safe place’

Are You Alone?

I am at a Starbucks out of town, while on a road trip with Greg. I noticed when walking in this place that it was unusually crowded. I peered around for a vacant table – and then I saw it. The only empty table in the place. A lonely LARGE table. This table holds eight people. It is empty. There are many smaller tables around it – all full. It is awkward. Little old me at such a large table. By myself. Alone.

Throughout the years I have witnessed people alone at a table for two in restaurants. I'm sure they are uncomfortable. They avoid eye contact, are often reading a book or a magazine and trying to “appear” busy. At the few times I have found myself alone out in public having to eat alone at a table for two – it is very awkward. I try not to feel that way – but the society in which we live – dictates that to be alone means something dreadful and sad. You feel people watching you – you want to scream, “I'm only alone because I am choosing it” but it is no use. Alone is alone. No matter how you slice it.

Many people find themselves alone at different seasons in life. Usually it is not planned, can happen suddenly and takes them by surprise. Being alone is an unpleasant prospect. Being alone out in public – even scarier. Especially for women.

I have often marveled at how people, once in a long-term relationship and suddenly alone, can begin again. They takes the necessary steps to go out in public again – and even after time *gasp* – begin the thought process of dating again. *Double gasp* The first time around is scary enough for anyone – why oh WHY would anyone choose to do it again? – I've always thought. But at the same time – I am amazed and warmed by those who have not only taken steps to not be alone – but actually find someone else. The chances for 'love the second time around' are really great!! And I have witnessed this marvel – many times over the years. Usually it is a long time friend, who also finds them-self alone or in this technically advanced society – through online dating sites.

The holidays can be wonderful – but also very lonely. Especially for those who have lost a mate, child or friend. There are so many sad songs surrounding the holidays. Some of the best lyrics involve sadness and loss. You would have to be intensely naive – to think that this season is automatically joyful for all.

If you are alone this season, the best thing you can do is get out and be with people. Attend a church service, holiday concert or an invite to a Christmas party. You may find that the warmth of friendship is your anchor and will bring you additional courage in the months to come. And because you are alone – your relationship with others in your life will become much more precious and you will now have time to renew old ties. If you have The Lord in your life – you know how much of a comfort it is to have a friend that “sticks closer than a brother” and who knows it all. He will become more dear to you during this time.

If you know someone who is alone for the first time this season – invite them over. Be a friend. Look around. Notice the ones who are alone in your church services. Get involved. Show gentleness and compassion. Spread love around. Sprinkle kindness. Stir in humor. Fold in understanding. Bring true meaning to the season this year. Make someone's Christmas truly special. You may be the only person who can.

God Bless

 

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A Safe Place

The "Safe Place" logo promoted by Na...

The “Safe Place” logo promoted by National Safe Place. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Have you ever been in someone’s presence and felt that you weren’t safe?  You had to weigh every word spoken, had to ignore the little ‘jabs’ of humor and eventually you found yourself either pushing back or shutting down?

Being and feeling safe is different for each of us.  And by safe, I mean something beyond just comfortable and easy.  It’s that intangible something that feels like you’ve come home and don’t have to watch everything that you say – you’re free to express without judgement, free to be yourself, free to confide, and be appreciated for your own uniqueness.

I saw a movie the other night on the life of Earnest Hemingway during the war years – and at one point in the movie he had to address a crowd of people.  He suffered terrible stage fright and when finally was able to speak to the crowd he told them, “I’m a writer – writers don’t have to speak out loud and address a crowd”  And in this very same way – we all relate in our own unique way.  Some of us are writers – some are good oral communicators – others are teachers some are shy computer geeks.  And each of us communicate in different ways to others.

Sometimes that mode of communication is misunderstood by others.  For me personally I have found that to be true.  Frustrating yes – but also disheartening.  I begin to hear people as they “joke” and “jab” about “those of us who are expressive” and “those of us who write feelings down” and I slowly begin to shut down.  It’s past the curiosity of just being different – it’s a smallness and intolerance that I find sad – and it’s in those people whom I do not feel safe.

Where is your safe place?  Do you relate to what I’m saying?  Do you have those whom you feel safe with?  Where you are able to express those words, written or spoken?  Where you feel understanding and acceptance for the way you are?  If you do – then you are blessed.

Don’t let anyone rob you of your unique voice.  God made you the way you are for a reason.  Years ago I had a pastor friend of ours tell me, “Cindy – don’t let anyone steal your joy”  This was after I got into trouble for being myself.  It was great advice and I still remember his words to this day.  Others have tried to mold and make me into what they think I should be.  But I am always frustrated when I am not free to be me and express myself in the way that is God-given.

Eventually though, someone – if not everyone will disappoint you at one time or another and even “rain on your parade”.  Where is your safe place then?

Psalm 18 says this:

1-2 I love you, God— you make me strong.
God is bedrock under my feet,
the castle in which I live,
my rescuing knight.
My God—the high crag
where I run for dear life,
hiding behind the boulders,
safe in the granite hideout.

3 I sing to God, the Praise-Lofty,
and find myself safe and saved.

I love this.  In God we find a safe place where we can hide out and feel loved.  He will always accept us and encourage us – help us to find our unique voice.

He breaks down the barriers that safeguard my heart

He encourages me to be me

He hangs on my every word

He offers His silent support

He makes me want to be better

He has time to love me right

To fill the emptiness

and loneliness

and promises unending joy

He restores that which has been lost

and those things I cannot let go

knowing me better than I know myself

He is my safe place.

 

God Bless

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