Sunday, March 20, 2011

Negative Experiences Can Be Sweet Blessings

How does God's wisdom relate to the gems he created? Check out the common Opal and what it means.
Gems of Wisdom line of jewelry supports the Sanctuary of Hope Orphan Homes and is available at

Opal: Ask the question:
How could I make a difference in this world with what I know, from what I’ve survived?

 Proverbs 16: 24 says, Pleasant words are a honeycomb: sweet to the taste and health to the body.

There's no way anyone gets through life without negative experiences. When we focus on how negative, how awful, and how they hurt those experiences become constant festering wounds. But it's amazing how inspirational those experiences can be when we use them to come along side others as they battle those hurts. 

Several years ago, I was asked to share with another woman about my mom's mental illness and how I became her full legal guardian. Over coffee, I heard the terrible hurt she was feeling with her own family member's mental illness. I couldn't have offered her anything had I not already been through what she was experiencing right then and there. But I had. And because of that I could offer her pleasant, helping words. I watched her face transform. She went from stress wrinkles and teary eyes to relaxed and comfortable in our conversation. By the end of our coffee chat, we'd agreed on some mentoring appointments to help her begin to manage the situation instead of being managed by it.

After several of those appointments, her life load had lightened. The situation was still acute. But my lovely friend had a new outlook and sense of purpose in her challenges. I learned that sharing my hurts as a place for others to rest was healthy to help others. But I also learned a special sense of joy and purpose in making a difference in the world with what I've survived.

What one difficulty have you survived that might be a blessing to someone else?

FYI: The opal is easily shattered. But opal dust still holds a shimmer and is often used to create beautiful benches and artwork. Sometimes it's that dusty shimmer that draws attention to the piece. It's an amazing element that can fill in between the cracks and hold things together. But it has to be shattered first before it can become an opalescent filler.

May you shimmer so someone else can rest in your care.
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