Tired? Hurting? Stressed? Battered? Join the crowd. If you aren’t there at the moment, you can recall the sensations with ease. We have ALL been there.
Recently I have been reminded in many ways of the importance of community. Community is what helps us keep our chins up. Sometimes it is the kind word, someone standing beside us, a listening ear, or even a hand under our chin holding it up. It is also the thing that allows us the opportunity to share kind words, stand beside someone, or hold up someone else’s chin.
I think we can be quick to forget how much community we actually have. We live in a world that celebrates the independent thinker, but we forget how much we can, and need to, rely on each other. I know I found it hard to reach out when I was hurting. I didn’t want to seem weak or needy. I cheated myself out of the benefits of shared experience.
I said it a couple times, and it is rare when I really think I’ve said something really good, so I will repeat it:
“We need to let people into our lives because shared experience is a mathematical phenomenon: the weight of grief is divided and the celebration of joy is multiplied. Life was meant to be lived together.”
There is always someone willing to share your experience and be a part of your community. Reach up and reach out. You are never alone in life. Pray, call your family, call your friends. If you don’t have family and friends, get your butt to a church and make some. March up to a welcome center and say, “Plug me in, I need a community.”
Life is not meant to be lived in solitude. Keep your chin up. If you can’t, I’ll hold it up for you.