what about when it’s hard?

Last week was one of those weeks, and the one before, and the one before. January has taken its toll on me and I am tired. Tired, not in my body but in my heart. 

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Tired of seeing people hurting, tired of seeing people getting hurt by others, tired of seeing people who are so used to hurt it just seems normal. It’s not…right?

I wanted to share with you one day in the middle of these few weeks to give you an idea of some of the realities I/we are facing here.

It was a Wednesday morning and Patrick and I were at The Warehouse for prayers and the staff meeting. Our boss, Jonathan, is off on sabbatical at the moment. During the prayer time I could feel my phone ring in my pocket, then I got a second buzz to tell me there was a voicemail – I quickly checked to see who it was from, it was Jonathan. Why was Jonathan calling me during prayers? He knows we’ll be in prayers, there must be some kind of problem.

A friend of mine that we’ve been supporting for a long time is hitting an all time low at the moment (the butterfly girlie from https://itisnolongeri.wordpress.com/2012/06/06/picture-this/). Her health isn’t good, and I have ongoing low level anxiety about her wellbeing. When I got this call from Jonathan I knew it was about her, my mind started to race and I thought maybe he was calling to tell me she had given up on life and it was too late…I didn’t know but for those 10 minutes, I couldn’t get rid of that horrible feeling in the pit of my tummy.

Anyway, I eventually got to listen to the message and it was about our butterfly, but just to say that she had been rushed to hospital yesterday and was very ill. Patrick and I headed straight to Manenberg to see what was going on and we found her in bed at home. The sight of her laying there, tiny and hopeless, she was clearly someone who had given up on life. We had a chat and said we’d be back later to hear what she wanted to do. We then spent the next few hours trying to find her options in rehabs or hospices or whoever would take her. We went back to see her in the afternoon and she had decided to go and visit the drug counselling people close by the next day.

Then, just as Patrick and I were about to leave the office to go home, a gun battle erupted outside the office. The shooting went back and forth for longer than I’ve experienced, and frankly, I was pissed off. It was literally the last thing I needed that day.

Why do I tell this story? Because sometimes my days are full of death and violence – I don’t want to glamorise life here, or ask for pity – but simply to let you know that some days it’s really hard. Some days I don’t think I can make it.  Thankfully, those days are often balanced out by the days of celebration or laughter…but not that Wednesday, and not the week around it. I later chatted to Jonathan who encouraged me that this is what we do…we’re not here to pump out all the good news stories but to hold people as everything around them falls apart and to love them, and love them, and love them.

But it’s hard.

“He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together”

 

 

 

 

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11 responses to “what about when it’s hard?

  • annepr

    Thanks for the posts Clare, you’re doing a great job out there. Keep up the hard work.

  • peteportal

    Miss Klee,
    You’re running the race marked out for YOU – and so you’re right where God would have you.

    God is going to continue to teach you new things in this season of Jonno’s sabbatical.

    You’re right – he holds us all together. He holds Fusion together. He holds butterfly girl together. Have a few days off! 🙂 xx

  • Jackie Whyte

    O Thou whose very promise is balm,
    every touch life,
    draw near to Thy weary warrior,
    refresh her that she may rise again to wage the strife…

    Give her a draught of the eternal fountain
    that lieth in Thy immutable, everlasting love and decree.
    Then shall her hand never weaken, her feet never stumble
    her sword never rest, her shield never rust,
    her helmet never shatter, her breastplate never fall,
    as her strength rests in the power of Thy might

    (from the Valley of Vision)

    Clare, thank you for allowing us to know something of the despondency you feel. The task is so big, I hope those of us who read your blog can be of some assistance in letting you know we are for you even-though we feel so helpless, and possibly even hopeless. We pray that you will be strengthened so that you can strengthen others,

  • sarah

    i wish i could be there with you to love them and love you at this time

  • Stephen

    Clare, My heart is very heavy today as I have read this, the tears are in my eyes, I am helpless to help but I am crying before God for Butterfly girl and also for you, my girl. Love you. Dad xx. Greater is He that is in you than he that is in the world….. to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us….

  • justsaskia

    My friend (Pete Portal) shared your post on facebook. My heart resonates with what you are saying here. But it is so true “we’re not here to pump out all the good news stories but to hold people as everything around them falls apart and to love them, and love them, and love them.”

    This is real life, and in is in the mess and broken that we learn what it means to love. Will be praying for you and for the people of Manenberg. It is not an easy place you have found yourself.

    Take care, xx

  • Margie Blake

    Hilary Murdoch shared this – I’m sorry it’s been so relentless but I rejoice in your honesty. How can we be real in our support, love and prayers if you aren’t? Thank you for that. The pain, the never-ending mess, and the brokenness are the reality and sometimes it’s just too hard. With love. Margie

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