When I look at my camera roll I see what most people see, a fabulous life full of travel and adventure. Most of our pics capture us on an island in the Caribbean or a picturesque snow capped mountain. We’re traveling the world, fishing, hiking, biking, paddle boarding, swimming, enjoying amazing food and tropical drinks. It looks like a fabulous life and that’s because it is. I’m not complaining. We are blessed beyond belief, but the beautiful pictures don’t tell the whole story.
Beyond the amazing trips and fabulous adventures there is a world full of pain and a multitude of struggles. In the midst of all of the fun and good times I was hurting very deeply. Whether I woke up at home or in the most beautiful locations in the world, I still woke up unhappy. I hated that I felt this way, but it’s how i felt nonetheless. I didn’t want to be miserable and ungrateful. As much as I wanted to feel happiness, joy, and peace the more it seemed that I felt sadness, despair, and hopelessness.
Not pictured in the photos were family issues, relationship struggles, friends that were hurting, loss of a job, and a raging battle with anxiety. Nobody captured the fighting or tear filled meltdowns on the beach on camera (thank goodness). There was no “you lost your job” photo op. No, these difficult and painful moments were not put on display and there what people see in the photos only tells half the story.
Recently I have become very open with my friends and family about what I am going through. I was desperate to find the peace and happiness I’d been seeking. I began praying much more and doing my best to relinquish control to God. I prayed, I asked, I begged for his Mercy. I asked him to show me where I was supposed to be and what I was supposed to be doing. I prayed for the things I wanted and needed in my life. I begged for him to take the pain and anxiety away. I was leaning into God more than ever for guidance, but while I was laying all of my problems and worries at his feet and lamenting about the things I was unhappy about, I was neglecting to thank him for all of the blessings in my life. I asked for what I wanted everyday, but I it slipped my mind to be grateful for all that he has done and is doing in my life.
I believe in the power of prayer and asking God to help us with our trials and tribulations, but as we ask God to ease our worries and take away our pain it is important that we take time to thank him each day for his blessings, mercy, and grace.
Life is full of hardships and disappointments. I pray that I become more able to overcome the disappointment and sadness to be more grateful and fulfilled. I pray for the patience and wisdom to deal with the struggles you dont see in the photos and the grace and humility to be thankful for what you do see in the pictures. Despite the hardships it’s a beautiful life. I hope that God will help me overcome my troubles and sorrows and work on through me to help others find his Mercy and Grace.