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There are 3 ways to gain wisdom: reflection, the noblest; imitation, the easiest; and experience, the bitterest.

Getting slapped upside the head isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when talking about what makes you happy. When asked what makes you smile, no one ever mentions liking that feeling in your stomach that is reminiscent of a punch in the gut. Conviction isn’t exactly everyone’s definition of a happy day.

It is, in my book.

When I was sitting on the far side of a third row pew in service, I got beat up pretty bad. If you could see it physically, I’d be limping and sporting two black eyes accented with a fat lip. It’s funny how quickly one can fall out of spiritual shape in one week.

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Most people would call me a strong person. I’m used to dodging what life throws at me and I can juggle several things at one time. No one ever asks how I got strong though. I didn’t just wake up one day able to carry these burdens. There are spiritual and mental workouts involved. It hurts. It hurts bad. Strong people know exactly what it feels like to be weak and in most cases, that’s the reason that they are so strong now.

It’s terrifying for a strong person to be thrown into circumstances where they are the weakest link. Strong people like me thrive on our survival-of-the-fittest mindset. That doesn’t mean we don’t get scared. And lately, fear has wrapped it’s fingers around my throat and I’ve been wrestling with doubts for the past few weeks.

Thanks for giving me that slap in the face, God. It stings but it knocked the fear off my back for another day. I’ll be crawling back asking for help again in a few hours but it’s comforting to know you’re going to be there.

And it makes me happy.

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