I have 4,029 photos on my phone. Sixty-seven of them aren’t of family, selfies or scenery. They’re words. There’s an album in my photo app dedicated entirely to grace-filled words.
When I read words that speak to my struggles, my feelings of inadequacies, or simply where I need to give myself a break, I take a screenshot and save it in this space.
We are pummeled with solicited and unsolicited words of advice through social media, advertisements and headlines. We’re told how to improve ourselves, our kids, our parenting, our marriage, our friendships and our careers. Some of these well-intentioned words give us new tools for old problems. Others leave us feeling conflicted, judged and even like a failure.
Sometimes we don’t need a fix. We simply need grace.
Grace for who we are, just as we are. A chance to feel known and seen through the words of someone who’s been there. A kind prompting to breathe fresh air or a sigh of relief.
I’m sharing a few of my archived words that I’ve clung to in weary moments, with the hope that they speak to your heart, your weariness, or your need for grace in this season.
For when you need a reminder that you’re enough:
“Just play your note. Sing your song. Write your story. Make your art. Be generous with your gifting, instead of looking left or right at others or burying your talent in the sand, just do your thing bravely.” – Kaitlyn Bouchillon, “This is What Success Looks Like”
Oh, how I need to read this every morning. I’m often stuck in the comparison trap, wondering whether what I’m doing or even who I am is enough. And it is. The world needs more people using their own strengths instead of wishing they had someone else’s.
For when parenting is exhausting:
“Normalize saying, ‘I remember those times and they were hard. How can I support you?’ instead of ‘Just enjoy it now. You’ll miss it when it’s over.’ – Kendra, @motherlikeaboss
I cringe when I hear this “just enjoy it, you’ll miss it” advice. I am trying. I know these words are well-intentioned. I know I’ll miss it. But do you know what I really need to hear? This season is hard. Beautiful, amazing, a blessing, short and precious… and hard, too. Tell me I’m not the only one, friend.
For when you feel the weight of the world:
“It’s not your job to fix all the problems in the world. Everyone has something that they feel especially tender towards or particularly pulled to. Those things are on your heart for a reason.” – Sharon McMahon, @sharonsaysso
The needs of this world are endless. I want to fix, help, know and be a part of it all. But I can’t. I have to know my strengths, gifts and heart-leanings and make a difference for what I care about, where I can, in the season I’m in.
For when you need to rest:
“Rest does not come by standing in perfected places. Rest will come by pressing pause, by stilling the urge to control all that looms and lacks, all that teems with possibility, and all in need of tending care.” – Rachel Kang, “For When You’re Tired of Toys and Toil”
This one yields in me a deep sigh of relief. Rest is not just for when we’re dead. We can rest now without dwelling on what we should be doing, but on how we’re getting stronger by being still.
For when you can’t see the light:
“A joy it will be one day, perhaps, to remember even this.” – Virgil, from The Aeneid
Joy can feel elusive in the middle of a tough season. But can we find just one thing, even if it’s small, to be grateful for and find joy in those past hardships, or even in today? That daily practice can build such soul resilience.
You’re enough. You’re not alone. You aren’t responsible for it all. You can rest. You can find joy.
Whether it’s these words or your own encouraging discoveries, I hope you find words that bring healing to your weary soul.