And I wonder why they haunt me. Vulnerability hurts. I give away pieces of myself, and I don’t get them back. They go away with it- the people- whether they know it or not. I never forget them. It would be different if they stole my heart, but they didn’t: I gave it freely, on purpose, aware that it would hurt, though with no idea of how much.

So I lay awake thinking, and praying, and writing of them. I wonder if they ever do the same, or if they have forgotten. Did my contribution make a difference for him; is it still at work now, a year later? Is it still significant to that person after five months? Do they remember and treasure those moments of vulnerability? Him, and her, and him…others. I can never forget. It hurts, yes, they have taken something, but I dare say they have given something too. I think the pain is worth it. Do you? No pain no gain.

If you refuse to give away your soul, to gain your soul by losing it you are left like Peter Pan: forever restless staring in at the window. Longing for something you have refused to allow yourself. He was somewhat whole, yet in so many ways he was not. I don’t want that to be me. So I keep giving more, and more. Honestly sometimes I don’t know what will be left at the end but I trust the Father that it will be good. That He will rejuvenate me so that I have more to give.

Investing yourself reaps forever rewards
and forever tortured memories.
It’s worth it, I know, but I miss them so much.
Do they remember, or have they forgotten
The short girl who loved them so much?
On cold dark grey nights do they lay awake thinking
Of me, and of others who’ve touched
that place in the heart that’s hidden so deep?
The real ones, the true ones, the hurt ones,
moved on but not nearly forgotten.


Categories: My Life, Ponderings | Tags: , , , , , | 6 Comments

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6 thoughts on “Giving

  1. Vulnerability hurts.” I was writing on the same topic, from a different direction, just yesterday.

    • Yes, I read that post, and it touched me. Pain, fear, and loss play such big parts in our relationship with God, or in mine at least. They hurt, but they make me stronger.

      • I realized after I commented here that the blog post of mine did touch the topic–but it actually wasn’t the writing of mine that I was thinking of when I left my comment. I am currently working on a book about the time I spent caring for my Grandfather (finishing up the second draft in the next week or so) and it was my work on that which was on my mind when I left my comment here.

        At first in my earlier comment I was going to paste a bit from the story to illustrate where my thoughts were coming from, but then I realized it was too lengthy, and really the full thought was woven through the entire book, and couldn’t really be cut down to an appropriate blog comment…so I ended up just writing the one sentence above. (Talk about going from the extreme of verbosity to brevity!)

        Vulnerability (with its attendant pain, hurt, and loss) was the thought explicitly on my mind at the time I was writing, but when I saw your post I was struck by another implicit issue which I have been mulling over: Futility. In your words, “Did my contribution make a difference” Isn’t that the thought which so often torments us when we lie in bed at night? I know it does me.

        Of course, it often feels like our contributions made no difference at all. Meaningless, meaningless! All is meaningless. And then it came to me how acutely this feels true when the person in question dies. Everything you gave that person, everything you poured into that person, is gone. Death makes all things futile, the ultimate undoing of all that is done. The author of Ecclesiastes says a lot on that.

        Except, that isn’t the end of the story.

        From that dark thought I remembered the answer to your question, and mine. The answer to the question is found in faith in Christ–who is the power and love of God. Does your contribution make a difference? Not in the slightest. Anything you might think to do is but dust and ashes. But does Jesus working through you make a difference? Absolutely–all the difference in the world! And there we find hope and joy in a world of hurt and sorrow. Because God is redeeming.

        The faith which speaks to the ultimate end of things is the very same faith that speaks in answer to the question of whether our present activity is meaningful. Just as the fruition of our personal walk with God (resurrection unto eternal life) is not seen at this present time but only beheld by faith, in a like manner we cannot expect to see the result of our labors at this present time. It is said, “it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose” (Philip. 2:13) God’s work always matters and always accomplishes what it sets out to do, whether He is touching you, or using you to touch others. When all seems undone, it is this promise we must cling to in the dark and stormy times. God doesn’t promise us that we will see how He has used us in this life. We can only believe, and remember that you/me without God = nothing, but you/me with God = everything.

        Which brought me to the next thought–that is, if the above is so, we must be careful to neither exalt ourselves in the serving, nor the person being served, but rather in all things exalt Christ, for if we seek or serve some thing other than Christ, it is an idol. It is easy (at least I have found it so) to become preoccupied with the person who is the object of our concern, or preoccupied with what we have done (or are doing) on behalf of that person, instead of being preoccupied with Jesus and what he has done–and living that out and serving him. If I may take your usage and turn it around–don’t give your heart to people, give your heart to God. He will never forget, and never fail to value what you have given him. And when you give yourself to God, He will use you to touch the lives of others. (Of course I don’t mean we should be cold hearted to those around us–I trust you get what I mean.)

        But that is really getting into another thought, so I will stop.

        Hope that encourages your thoughts.


      • Yes, I’ve read some of your essays on that time. These are very interesting insights. Very encouraging. On our own we can do nothing… sometimes I struggle to remember that. Exalting Christ and His works is everything. Thank you for commenting!

  2. Nastya Andreyevna

    Just one thing, Short-Girl-Who-Loved-Them-So-Much:

    You and your giving away has a whole lot more impact than you could ever imagine.

    Not everyone forgets.

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