Love Warrior

October 9th

November 2016 garden

 

Remember how I recently attended that Glennon Doyle event? They gave all the attendees her latest book on our way out the door. I finished “Love Warrior” this weekend while traveling.

I am new to the Glennon game, but lots of my girlfriends consider her up there next to Oprah, Jen Anniston and Reese Witherspoon in the hierarchy of famous women we look to for advice we should probably just figure out ourselves. After reading this, yes—I get it. I understand Glennon’s appeal. She is vulnerable and honest with her reader to a point that made me uncomfortable. She also reminds readers that faith has nothing to do with perfection.

There were a couple spots in this book that had me nodding and thinking, “I’ve got to write that down!”

{Enter the blog.}

“Most of the messages we receive every day are from people selling easy buttons. Marketers need us to believe that our pain is a mistake that can be solved with their product. As so they ask, ‘Feel lonely? Feel sad? Life hard? Well that’s certainly not because life can be lonely and sad and hard, so everybody feels that way. No, it’s because you don’t have this toy, these jeans, this hair, these countertops, this ice cream, this booze, this woman… fix your hot loneliness with this.’ So we consume and consume but it never works, because you can never get enough of what you don’t need. Our pain is not the poison; the lies about the pain are.”

Oh boy, do I get that. I have tried to buy my way out of unhappiness so many times, you’d think I’d realize it wouldn’t work. More expensive jeans. Fancy department store mascara. Another handbag. None of these made my pain better—if anything, my shopping without budgeting often made my life more difficult and anxiety laden.

The big takeaway I got from this quick read was about pain. Glennon is wrestling with her husband’s infidelity and whether or not she should stay in her marriage. Her pain is wholly different from anything I’ve experienced. And yet her writing about working through her pain made a lot of sense to me, especially in her relationship with God.

She writes, “I think about how the people who seem closest to God are often not dressed up and sitting in pews, but dressed down and sitting in folding chairs in recovery meetings. They have refused to cover themselves any longer. They are the ones who are no longer pretending. They are the ones who know. Pain led them to their rock bottom, and rock bottom is the beginning of any honest life, any spiritual journey. These are the ones who know that faith is standing before your maker and asking, ‘I just need to know if you can really know me and still love me.’ God’s yes to us is free and final. Our yeses to each other are harder to come by.”

Glennon’s story is also one of recovery and sobriety. She is an addict who unexpectedly finds herself pregnant. She has to clean up, so she does. But it isn’t an easy or straight path and she has to tell herself regularly not to think about getting through the day, but getting through the next choice. Making the next choice a good one.

The final passage I’ll share also made me smile and resonated. It is beautifully written:

“Some loves are perennials—they survive the winter and bloom again. Other loves are annuals—beautiful and lush and full for a season and then back to the earth to die and create richer soil for new life to grow. The eventual result of both types of plants is new life. New life. Nothing wasted. No failure. Love never fails. Love is messy and beautiful and brutal—and real love, the dangerous kind—it changes us. It makes us new.”

3/5 bananas, absoloodle

~K

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