“How are you?”
“How ya doing?”
“How’s it going?”
These are all questions we ask each other everyday. How many times do we give a real answer, or expect another person to? Instead, we are too often content to reply, with our best not-really-happy-but-its-what-I’m-supposed-to-say smile, “great,” or “good.”
Recently, I was in a place where I could not say it. I could not just respond to the question with an answer that was so far from the truth. I was not good, I was far from great, I was in a dark place and needed help. So I did the scary thing. I was real. I took off the super-mommy cape and admitted I was no super-mommy. I was a depressed, scared, confused, lonely, overwhelmed mommy.
This was not easy. Being real can be hard. It can hurt. It is not safe. But, in being real I discovered a path to healing. When I was real it allowed others to step in and help. It allowed others to come along side me.
Being real allowed others to encourage me through phone calls, texts, dinners, visits and conversations. I discovered first hand why the writer of Hebrews exhorts his readers to “encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called “Today,” so that none of you will be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.” Hebrews 3:13.
When I faked it and pretended like all was “great,” I did not allow others to see the “real” that I was struggling with. It’s a risk to be real, sometimes others may not know how to respond to an answer that deviates from the norm. But it’s a risk worth taking. Be real with others and if someone is real with you, be the one who comes along and walk with them through the dark and helps her find the light, hope in Jesus Christ.