Showing posts with label Pain. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Pain. Show all posts

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Through the Eyes of a Lion by Levi Lusko

What do you do when, just days before Christmas, you're forced to walk out of the emergency room and leave your five-year-old daughter behind? Only she isn't really there anymore, only her body is.

How do you survive such impossible pain?

In his book, Pastor Levi Lusko shows with heartbreaking honesty how to face impossible pain and find incredible power. But Through the Eyes of a Lion is more than just a manual for dealing with grief. In Levi's words, it's "a manifesto for high-octane living." Those words couldn't be more true. I've never experienced the level of pain that Levi and his wife Jennie did the day their daughter Lenya left this earth. But I have struggled with fear, anxiety, and defeat, and I walked away from this book encouraged and empowered to change the way I view the challenges in my life.

Posing questions like "How do you live out an extraordinary calling while doing ordinary things and living in a world that is all screwed up?" Levi uses his real life experiences to teach you how to hurt with hope, look past what you can see, and let go of fear to become the you you were meant to be. And he does so with a mix of authenticity, brevity, gravity and humor that makes this not only a powerful read, but one you can easily engage with. From "cue the eagle" to "pain is a microphone" and "run toward the roar" the pages are full of tidbits of wisdom and key phrases that will stick with you long after you finish reading. Whether you're struggling under the weight of seemingly unbearable pain, or facing the everyday difficulties of life, this book offers renewed hope--for both your present and your future. 

"When you have hope, gale-force winds can blow and tsunami waves can smash into the hull of your life, but you are buoyed by the belief that the best is yet to come, that brighter days are ahead. Hope quietly tells your heart that all is not lost, even as storms rage."

Available today at a bookstore or online bookseller near you! Grab a copy for yourself and one (or two or three or four) for anyone in your life who needs to hear more about the power of hope.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Empathy in the Real World

Last night all of America grimaced as we watched Bode Miller endure a very uncomfortable--and tactless--interview. My heart went out to him. I was saddened by the story of his brother's death, so glad he medaled, and so sorry that he had to be subjected to a slew of inconsiderate questions at such a vulnerable moment. I--along with many others--simply couldn't understand why someone could be so thoughtless in the face of such intense grief.

It's not the first time in the last week that I've had the subject of grief on my mind. Recently I've been pondering the reality of pain in a media-soaked culture. We make connections with hundreds of people--both close friends and random strangers--every day via social media. This exponentially increases our chances of encountering another person's pain or grief. Last week, on the same day, a friend of mine posted on Facebook the news that she'd lost an old friend to cancer while another woman, who I know only via her Instagram feed, posted about the memorial service being held for her daughter who was stillborn at 37 weeks. And I started thinking: How often do we scroll past the pain in our feeds? I know I'm guilty of it. It saddens me to think that I'm more likely to shed a tear for a fictional character in a book or film than I am for the real live people I see experiencing real live pain.

I'm not saying we do it because we're cruel or indifferent or uncaring. We do it because grief is uncomfortable. Pain is uncomfortable. Especially when you've never experienced personally what another person is going through. We don't know what to say, we fear saying the wrong thing, and so we skip over those posts, those tweets, without saying anything at all.

As an author I want to evoke emotions in my readers. And that's not a bad thing. My own favorite books and movies are the ones that make me laugh, or cry, or--preferably--both. But I never want to feel more empathy for a fictional character than I do for the real people that I encounter each day.

I would challenge you--challenge us--to stop next time we're tempted to scroll a little faster. Don't shove empathy aside. Instead, take the time to hit "comment" or "reply". It can be as simple as saying "I'm sorry you're going through this." Or "You're in my thoughts." No words? Even an emoticon heart is better than silence.

And that's the great thing about the internet and this crazy online community that has become part of our reality: While it gives us more opportunities to be confronted with pain and grief, it also gives us more opportunities to do something about it.

Let's not waste it.