I have been so intrigued by this book, I can barely put it down. It has inspired me to write my own stories. There are so many of them-too many to count, thousands a day. Sometimes I think they are too ordinary to share. I haven’t had anything miraculous or crazy happen to me. That is, nothing miraculous the way the world defines it, but I do indeed see miracles every day. And like this author, I am aching to write about them.
Probably one of the best quotes so far is in her section on “Freedom.” She writes,
We usually look outside of ourselves for heroes and teachers. It has not occurred to most people that they may already be the role model they seek. The wholeness they are looking for may be trapped within themselves by beliefs, attitudes, and self-doubt. But our wholeness exists in us now. Trapped though it may be, it can be called upon for guidance, direction, and most fundamentally, comfort. It can be remembered. Eventually we may come to live by it.
This spoke to me fiercely. I am always looking for outside help, ideas, support and clarity. Most often, I hear the critical voice saying, “You’re stupid. You don’t know anything.” “You’re incompetent, how could you think you’d make it?” “You’re going to have break down.” and other absurd lies. But I do believe them most days. The author later, through a story, talks about how we become the real “us” and surprise ourselves. I do that a lot. I look at a lot of the things I have accomplished with God’s (and others’ at times) help and I stand back in awe. The ugly person I sometimes think I am could never have done these things: studying in Guatemala for a semester in college despite challenging physical/emotional problems, returning to college after having left for a semester due to severe depression, graduating from college, teaching inner city for 2 years with very difficult students and an unsupportive principal, radically changing my diet and lifestyle, advocating for my health in unknown situations, staying on top of loans and bills, working odd jobs to make my way (after losing my job), starting a 3rd new teaching job while also tackling grad school, supporting friends going through hard times, my commitment to my church groups, and my most recent feat of getting off of anti-depressants (after 9 years). For all these and many more things, I am so in awe and grateful. I just need to remember those things.
On the hard days, I tell myself, “I have been through worse.” And it’s true. I have gone through so much and I will no doubt go through worse things later. But the truth of the matter is, I need to use the God-given resources I have inside me already rather than searching for a solution in all the books I read or in a person I think is smarter than I. What a good reminder… hopefully you can be reminded of this too in your own life! And I highly recommend this book!