Each of us experiences times of disappointment and being hurt. Regardless of the cause, there is a period of time when we feel rotten. If we’re lucky, that period of time is brief. If we’re really fortunate, there is someone near who recognizes that hurt and comes to our aid to help heal the pain and get us moving in a positive direction.
While working at home tonight, I happened to have on TV the show Big Brother. When a man was voted out of the house, he was obviously upset and made a fairly quick exit out of the house, bypassing the usual nicety of giving all the remaining house guests hugs. His face and his actions said “hurt” very clearly.
When he walked out and into the studio audience, they immediately cheered him. The expression on his face quickly changed. A smile came over him and he started giving high fives to them.
TV is not reality – not even so-called reality TV. Big Brother is a game. Life isn’t.
We can’t always know that others will be there at that moment we need them most. Maybe they will be – maybe not. Regardless, you and I can commit to being there for others when they need us most.
It doesn’t take a lot of perception to strongly sense when others hurt. A troubled look on a face, a request for thoughts or prayers, behavior out of character – these and other indicators may be cries for help. If we hear the cry, it is the kind, human, right thing to do to respond in a way that lifts the other person up. It may not take a lot to provide that encouragement – perhaps just some kinds words and our friendly presence.
It’s easy to get so wrapped up in our own activities that we fail to receive the signals others send for help. This is my plea to you and my reminder to myself to raise the antennae higher and be more mindful of those who hurt. Then be an agent of healing and kindness.
In the words of a former pastor at my church, leap year lesson #246 is Find a hurt and heal it.