Crossfitter. Back-Packer. Mother of two.
Kind and full of GRIT.
Please welcome guest blogger, Lisa Doyle, to the Gritty Pearl this week!
Last week, my life went off the rails.
There was a lot of cheating, lying, and the finality of my signature on a divorce agreement. Stamped and filed, it's on the docket to change my life forever. A dear friend texted me before I headed downtown with my soon-to-be-ex that morning, knowing the kind of pain I was walking into. She told me to pick a breath prayer and sent a verse.
Grief isn't reserved for the deaths of those we love, because this week, I'm experiencing the death of a dream. If you’ve ever begun the first stages of mourning, you know that your mind is sometimes incapable of wrapping around the biblical language of David, or anyone else of intellect.
Quick to Google, where the Message version of the Bible quickly translated for me, were the words that I’ve huddled under for a week now. I take comfort knowing that, even within the hazy walls of hurt, there is somewhere to pause.
If you’re heart is broken, you’ll find God right there; if you’re kicked in the gut, He’ll help you catch your breath. (Psalm 34:18)
That, my saving grace. That, my prayer. That, my God who speaks to me in big ways when I can hear it, and when I can’t, within the small spaces between His word and the heartbeats ricocheting in my ribcage.
Slow down, He says. Bend over and get low, let life spill around the edges of you and simply carry the oxygen back to your heart. Let go of the chase for a second. Let the kids eat instant mashed potatoes and let your friends bring you muffins and cheesecake, and make sure that your own structured house of cards won't demolish in a hurricane of hate. Let that melt away gently, like a slow drop of sun at summer’s back door.
Broken heart? Check. Kicked in the gut? Check. God right here helping my catch my breath? Absolutely, check. Because this week, I’m winded. In this life your heart, at some point, is going to shatter.
In this life, God’s got that covered.
And so I'm waiting. Waiting for God to show up and help the heartbeats ricocheting in my ribcage to settle down.
And then He does. And then they do.
And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Phil. 4:7, NIV)
The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. (Psalm 34:18, NIV)
1. What advice would you give to your best friend going through a difficult time in her life? Would you take your own advice?
2. Even if you’re not going through a tough time, what specific actions could you take today to slow down and catch your breath?
3. Who are your top three "go-to" girls when life has you overwhelmed? Do they give good, Godly advice? If you can’t answer that question, what can you do to start cultivating those relationships?
Lisa is a southern transplant, raised in Pennsylvania but putting down roots in Wilmington, North Carolina. She spends most of her days either at the middle school where she is an instructional reading coach or at the Crossfit gym. She's the mother of two crazy boys; an elementary student and a middle schooler.
Lisa attends Lifepoint Church, where she volunteers and leads a small group of women who are a lifeline to sanity. More comfortable behind a pen or a computer screen than face-to-face, it's her dream to seamlessly live with two feet in this world: one heartbeat in the Spirit, and half a second wrapped up in words.
Photo Credit: Chris Sardegna
M.S. in Marriage and Family Therapy. Earns Crossfit participation trophies. Disaster cook. Enthusiastic wife. #Boymom. Clutches her faith, not her pearls.