The Question We Don’t Want to Answer

Quarantine Day 53, NYC

Well, we’ve officially surpassed the 50 day mark for quarantine. I feel like there should be some sort of consolation prize for that grim milestone. Like a four-pack of Charmin Ultra Soft and a handle of top shelf liquor or something. At the very least a travel size mini Purell hand sanitizer. Is that too much to ask?

I read a staggering statistic recently: 30 million. Thirty million. That’s the current number of people who have filed for unemployment in the US as a result of the coronavirus.

If that number seems outrageous, that’s because it is. Nearly 18.6% of the work force now finds themselves out of a job or furloughed, thanks to the current state of things.

And reading that, I’m sure it hits close to home for many of you. I know it does for me.

Just this past week, I lost another acting job due to COVID19. That’s the second time during this pandemic, on top of a canceled speaking engagement that was scheduled for March.

Thirty million people. Each, not just a “number,” but a person. With a story: Moms. Dads. Siblings. Spouses. Sons and daughters. Friends. Colleagues. That staggering statistic hits differently when you think about the person behind the number: struggling to pay bills, put food on the table, blowing through savings, or finding themselves having to go to food banks for the first time, ever.

It’s heartbreaking.

I spent a lot of time this weekend, reflecting on that. Wrestling with thoughts of inadequacy and disappointment from digesting the news about that acting job. But a thought came into my head, that I wanted to share with you.

Right now, work looks differently for everybody. If we’re not grappling with job loss, then we’re adjusting to a redefined role at our jobs. And as a result, one of the things I think most people have been confronted with as we’re all met with more time on our hands than ever before, is this very soul-defining question: How am I contributing to society?

What does it mean that’s I’m not essential? Aren’t we all essential? And if not, then what does that mean about me?

Because at the end of the day, all any of us want, is to matter. We could be talking jobs, we could be talking in a relationship, we could be talking to our communities…Do I matter?

And I think what we’re all — myself included — coming to realize, as a result of this quarantine, is that a lot of us have been tying up too much of our worth in our jobs.

My worth comes from my contribution to my company. To my ability to make money. To my position as X, Y, or Z on the corporate laddar. To my paycheck.

My worth is defined by my contribution to society.

And as those things have been stripped away or significantly altered — for, at a bare minimum, 30 million of us — we’re left grappling with a question we’re terrified to answer?

Do I matter?

I felt this question worm its way into my head this weekend, during a quiet moment of weakness. And to be honest, it’s a thought that I have wrestled with before, during my eating disorder.

You see, oftentimes, with anorexia comes crippling perfectionism. The usually go hand in hand. At least they did for me. I had tied up my worth in this completely unattainable standard of perfection.

I believed I had to be perfect to be loved.

I had to achieve this, and earn that, in order to qualify for love. In order to be worth something.

It gave me a false sense of security, believing that I could control those outcomes.

And eventually, that quest for perfection began to strangle every aspect of my life: from my academics, to sports and extra-curriculars, to which social group I ran with, to my boyfriend, to my appearance, and eventually — to my weight.

And there you can see the spiral take off.

I had to completely surrender that destructive way of thinking. And for me, it took rock bottom to get there.

I remember exactly where I was when it finally “clicked.”

I was at an inpatient hospital across the country from my family. And part of the admittance process is that you have to undergo an initial medical assessment of sorts. I was brought into this back room with these two stern nurses, and they handed me a blue, backless, paper hospital gown with the one word instruction, “Strip.” Because they wanted to do a full body check for any sign of self harm, which is a common manifestation of eating disorders. And standing there, shivering, naked, at 78 pounds, with no hair on my head because it had all fallen out due to malnutrition, getting checked for signs of self mutilation at an eating disorder treatment facility — I thought to myself, — Caralyn. This is it. My life does not get any lower than this. 

I had spent the last year and a half, manipulating and lying to everyone I loved. I destroyed my relationships — didn’t return a phone call or text for two years. I had dropped out of everything: Went from top scholar, varsity athlete, to a very sick, deeply broken girl. I had nothing. Absolutely nothing left.

If God can rescue me from that…From that pit of rock bottom. If God can look at that scared and shaking girl and see her worth, and value, and dignity as a Child of God — there is nothing He cannot do. 

Right now, we’ve got two choices. We can either succumb to the lie that our worth lies in our job titles. In what we achieve. In what we accomplish.

OR, we can claim the truth that our worth is completely separate from those superficial externalities. Yes – work is important, and we were made to work. But it does not define that which was determined by Jesus’ death on the Cross.

That is what truly defines our worth. Our dignity. Our value: Jesus defined it for us.

Our greatest job in life, is to claim that truth. And embrace the absolute freedom and security that comes with it.

Do I matter?

More than I will ever know. I matter enough for Christ to literally die for.

And knowing that truth, the question then becomes, how will I respond?

As we set out on another week in quarantine, know that I’m praying for you, that I love you, and that I am grateful for your presence in my life! You matter to me! 🙂

“This is what the Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.” Ez 37:5

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beautybeyondbones

BBB: Because we're all recovering from something. // For speaking/business inquiries: beautybeyondbones@yahoo.com

197 thoughts on “The Question We Don’t Want to Answer

    1. thanks for sharing that, Lawrence. it’s definitely out of our control! stay well. Hugs and love xox

      1. Yea, the bad guys are out of control to be more concise and I know from being in their gauntlet in my home turf they are evil badasses in the Dem Nazi cartel! I know people like you and many others are fine and good thing we have ya, but the bad is outweighing the good because too many victims of circumstance and the evil swallows them up like fishes! Being led astray and sucked into the whirlpool but warriors are coming and I want to be one before I kick it! Raw energy here not the kid I once was but my soul is stronger!

      2. I know Caralyn you dig it and see it! I wish too but my day of wishing upon a star is past; because things would be so much different for me and those I could touch with my heart! But the cold and hard evil has done damage! Though, I’m here to say its all going down BIG TIME! Then, evil will be NO MORE!

      3. Hi Caralyn! This is one good reason I made that remark about out of control and insane last night!
        I’ve been thinking how corrupted and wrong society has gotten where sensibility, plain decency, morality, principles and integrity are becoming extinct qualities in so many people who have turned to pagan secular mindsets that are ruining humanity.
        On October 1, 2019, the Little Sisters of the Poor asked the Supreme Court to protect them from the HHS contraceptive mandate again and end their legal battle once and for all. The Supreme Court will review the Third Circuit’s decision in Little Sisters of the Poor v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania on May 6, 2020.
        https://www.becketlaw.org/case/commonwealth-pennsylvania-v-trump/

  1. There’s such an opportunity to proclaim the grace of God, announcing that people are chosen and loved not for any status or achievements, but because God values them. Thanks for blogging grace, although I’d still love to see you get your Charmin, liquor or Purell this side of eternity 🙂

    1. you’re so right about that! Because He loves and values us! thanks for sharing that 🙂 hahahah me too! bring on the cha cha cha charmin! Hugs and love xox

  2. Caralyn, the garbage that happened to me over the last decade I knew the world was getting very evil and getting much darker, so now I’m at least still alive to say so! I like that! I tell the devil and all of his minions they will get their DUE! In the name of Jesus Christ!!! Amen!!!

    1. thanks Lawrence for sharing that 🙂 i’m sorry that you’ve had to go through that garbage!

      1. I know Caralyn you dig it and see it! I wish too but my day of wishing upon a star is past; because things would be so much different for me and those I could touch with my heart! But the cold and hard evil has done damage! Though, I’m here to say it’s all going down BIG TIME! Then, evil will be NO MORE!

      2. Funny thing, I had an internet problem all day and had to postpone my attending to matters but then I just got it all back moments ago when you put up your blog post! Good timing by someone!!!? You take care! See ya!

      3. Thanks btw but, eh stuff happens, that’s how this place works! I say gutta let it roll off! Like my kid sister used to say when we were growing up or I mean she was growing up lmao, life’s a beach, then you die!!! Heavy Metal girl what can I say, nuff said! 🙂 Out for a 5 mile trek at the crack of dawn; that’s something I CAN DO!!! Later Gator! We both used to say that one! Hahahaha. 😜😂 🤣 🤣 👍 🙏

  3. Hi Caralyn, we are struggling with self worth a thousand different ways. For men, the job title, the income, the car you drive, and yes even looks too. How much you bench press at the gym… For me, it took a long to getting over education and career because I was unemployed for 2+ years during the last recession and with an advanced degree. I can empathize with those with 0 income, what seemed so sure is now sand. 🙁

    But as you said, it is either we look to God’s unconditional love, or wallow in self-pity and lying and manipulation. Praying for God will provide.

    1. Thanks for sharing that, friend. You’re right – the struggle is real, and different for each person. yes – joining you in those prayers. Stay well. Hugs and love xox

  4. Yes, I do agree we see our worth in society based on capacity to contribute.

    But while reading your post, a thought that has been doing the rounds comes to my mind.

    There have been mentions of your medical history and you drawing life lessons from it. I too am recovering from a medical condition. My dilemma is when does falling back on the past to continuously compare our present become too much. In the sense of relating everything back to pre and post condition.

    1. thank you so much for sharing that – that’s a very good question. I think it all depends on where your headspace is in the comparison. If you’re looking back as a strength to see how you’ve grown and in appreciation for the lessons learned, i think it’s fine. and beneficial. Gratitude is a powerful thing. So is perspective. But if it’s being used as a crutch or in longing, i think it is not beneficial. hope that clarifies. Hugs and love xox

  5. I think this is my favorite post that you have ever done. We have become a society that our “worth” has been so caught up in the material things we have, the car we drive, the home etc… that when one loses any of it, they almost go insane. That is why I stay country! LOL!

    If we would look at life, that this could be our last day on this earth, would any of these things really matter? No! The thing which is going to matter in our last breath, is “did we have enough faith, did we serve God well, are we going up or down?”

    You know I had a little ten year old cousin that died, and as she was dying she told her grandmother, “Grandma, do you see him sitting in that chair?” Grandmother: “Who?’ ” That angel he has come to get me.” Then her next statement was as she was dying, “Oh Grandma it is so beautiful, I wish I could take you with me.” That was her last words and she died at that moment.

    She was ten years old, dying, and had not one ounce of fear. In fact she wanted to take my aunt, (her grandmother) with her.

    I think right there we should understand what our worth truly is to God. Loved the post, love you more, and God Bless, SR

    1. Oh SR, i am so sorry to hear that. That is just so tragic. but wow – what a powerful message from one so young. You’re right about that — our worth to Him is truly incomprehensible! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  6. What a crazy time we live in, in a crazy world often we feel helpless when we look at a big picture such as the one you have today. But I think there are lots of things we can do to support our local community bubble such as walk to different local shops and support local shop keepers even if this means trying a shop that is still open that you have yet to go in that is local to you. Buying goods that you want to see them sell more of either organic, fair trade or just simply local produce for you that would be USA or NY County. Some restaurants and bars in Exeter are now licensed to sell stuff to public via deliveroo or ubereats or a local equivalent.

    If you have a favourite bar or cafe why not ask them if this is something they could do, if they know you they might listen to you and if they are already doing it try and support them when you can. My Dad gets beer delivered from a local brewery which is good for my dad and good for the local brewery. My local brewer is the Guinness Factory in Dublin but that is another story. Also if you know local musicians why not try and buy there album (if you like having something to show for your money which I do or purchase a digital copy of their music. Every little helps. As consumers we can shape the world we want to live in. I would love to own a copy of your book one day but yet to choose to purchase it on Amazon. You write such interesting posts and really opened my eyes to ideas and thoughts that were in the shadows to my life before. Cwtche from me to you via the magic of the World Wide Web.

    1. you’re so right about that – a crazy time indeed! thanks for these great ideas! you’re right — supporting our local communities is so so so vital if we are to heal from this! every little bit helps for sure! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  7. Yes, in God’s and our mother’s eyes, we matter. But in society’s view of things, we must be prepared for the harsh reality that if we do not ‘contribute’ something of value, we will not be seen as having value. (Not related to appearance or weight.) And actually Jesus tells us over and over that we are to SERVE others, put others needs before our own, help the poor and less fortunate. I was just thinking about this today because I think there is a growing segment of the population in first world countries that do not contribute anything, they just take and take and complain and whine if they don’t get their way. This is not good. Even those with disabilities or chronic illnesses can contribute in some way. Unless you are on your actual death bed, you can at least PRAY for others, give a kind word, offer encouragement. Those are very important contributions! Essential in fact. 😉 People who do not look outside themselves often become depressed and angry and even self-hating, but as a twisted form of pride. KWIM? Hope you get out of jail soon and stay well. <3

    1. you’re so right about that ! we are to serve others! that is how we most truly matter! that is the exact example that Jesus showed us with His life and His ministry. Amen – joining you in those prayers! thanks for your kindness! Hugs and love xox

    1. aw thank you so much!! glad you enjoyed it! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  8. God has something He’s putting us all through. What it all is or meanwhile exactly, I do not know. Whatever He has in store from all of this He does love us and I think He does want us to see what we can be essential for. You are so right!! It’s not about material breakthroughs. Too many people thrive on all that. A big saying today is “you got this”. It’s wrong. We don’t “got this”. GOD has got this!! And He gives us what we need in it and through it. You are NYC’s Sunshine through it’s darkness!! ♥️♥️🌹🌹🤗🤗😘😘

    1. thank you so much Migueltio! you’re right – God will use all of this for good!! He has got this! what a comforting truth. And gosh – that put a huge smile on my face – thank you! seeing your instagram messages every day bring me so joy!! 🙂 thank you! stay well! Hugs and love xox

    1. awww thank you so much Ayesha! i appreciate that 🙂 stay well my friend! Hugs and love xox

    2. As long as there is a dark place that needs the light of Christ, that is our greatest worth because death is changed to eternity. There is no greater cause because it is the only ultimate vaccine. We may live today, but without Christ it’s only a matter of time. All true Christians have great worth in this earth. Nobody wants to live in a completely dark planet. We all do need to think about what we want our value to be. Another excellent article from BBB!

  9. Yes, you matter. You matter to God. You matter to your readers, of whom I am proud to say that I am one. To industry in the US, they shout on the roof tops that their most valuable resource are their employees, but in practice, they lay off employees to make the numbers look good in non-COVID19 years. Only Japanese managers fall on their swords (sometimes literally) when the numbers are not favorable. But in a nonCOVID situation, the furloughed employees would probably not get unemployment. I was once in an employed state, but not employed because there was no work for me to do. The employer would not release me from my contract so that I could get unemployment (it hurts their insurance rate) but the employer would not give me any busy work either. You keep sane by knowing that family loves you, friends love you, and most important, God loves you. Now that matters.

    1. amen to that! and oh gosh i am so touched by that 🙂 thank youu! and goodness, i’m sorry you went through that . amen – God loves us and we matter to Him, no matter what garbage we have to endure here on earth! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  10. God considers all of us essential. That is why Jesus came to sacrifice himself on the cross. God treasures us and wants us to be with him in relationship and in heaven.

    1. Yes He does!! Amen to that. Thanks for that wisdom. Stay well. Hugs and love xox

  11. This is another deep, well-written piece. When we look at ourselves, we need to see ourselves the way God sees us. He doesn’t screw up and make mistakes. Or junk. We are His precious children. When we connect our head to our heart, this becomes part of who we are. Keep writing. Keep going…

    1. thank you so much John, i appreciate that 🙂 you’re right about that! We need to see through His eyes! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  12. It is amazing how we become defined by our job or career and when it is taken away, we become lost. Retirement is the great equalizer, when everyone becomes equal. The sooner we realize that we are so much more than our work, the better we all are. Part of my speech on retirement was….”this job is not who I am, it is just what I do”. As to being labelled non-essential, I am sure this is not an intended slight. It is just to ensure that as many people as possible can stay isolated at home and hopefully not become infected by Covid 19 and to my mind, that is a thoughtful consideration, as long as the government has programs in place to supply income until everyone can get back to work. Hopefully, we all all be in the “current” normal soon and do not have to retrench due to increased infections. Stay safe and stay well and be assured everyone is essential. Allan

    1. Your so right about that. Thanks Allan for sharing this insight! Amen – what a profound quote!! I would have loved to hear your speech! Hugs and love xox

  13. You are so right Caralyn. The world around us deems someone’s worth based on either their economic contribution or attached titular tag.
    Yes the difficulties are real in this life and especially at this time, but may we turn to Him to be our comforter and provider and find our worth only in Jesus.
    Blessings 😊💙

    1. amen to that! He is our comfort!! what a powerful reminder! thanks for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

  14. We matter and are essential when we give top priority to the only One who matters. Everything else is tied, one way or another, to this world, and so is not essential. Lovely, lovely job, my friend. Hugs and love.

    1. you’re so right about that! the One who matters! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  15. Beautiful post, Caralyn! When I read it the following verse came to mind as the answer to “Do I matter?”
    “Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life” (Matthew 6:26-27)

    Keep on writing and keep on smiling!!

    1. Thank you so much Roy! oh gosh i absolutely love that verse from Matthew. So much comfort!!! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  16. Thanks so much Caralyn for these words! Likewise, before COVID I also would ask this question (Do I Matter?) of myself on occasion. I felt the Lord was getting my attention to stay on point as to why he allowed me to be born and not focus so much on a situation. It took awhile but I had to see he was Greater than my circumstance. As always soothing words!!👍🏾😊

    1. thanks so much Al! amen to that – He is greater than our circumstances! what a powerful truth! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  17. Carolyn this is beautiful. I had never seen my father so disheartened as when he was “laid off.” It was technically retirement two years earlier than he had expected, but to him it was a body blow which devastated him. I have been wrestling with a similar issue myself. I tried desperately to hold on to my identity as a teacher throughout the challenges of the last two decades. I was often made to feel I had nothing to offer. I did my best to operate quietly in the background, volunteering in schools and helping friends with their children but yes the experience has been deeply wounding.
    Overheard by somebody recently at an employment office, was a woman basically saying, she was basically not one of those “scroungers” /freeloaders relying on welfare. She was different. The fact is none of us are really THAT different. We should probably all be saying, “There but for the grace of God go I.”

    1. thank you so much for sharing that – you’re right – There but for the grace of God go I — that is such a wise and mature way of living. i’m taking that nugget of wisdom with me – thank you 🙂 Hugs and love xox

  18. ♡ Please don’t neglect SHE!!! Goddess, Spouse of “God” EveryOne; it’s Crystal Clear Clarity to Me that that My First Experience of Vagina was Coming (Pun Intended) Out of A Vagina aka My Mom Giving Birth and Ever Since I Have Been Skirt Chasing in Order to Get Back in to The Vagina…so, now I Have Quit Skirt Chasing; if SHE!!! wants My Ugly Bits SHE!!! will have to Come (Pun Intended) and Get Them as ALL is Fair in Love and War 🤣😅😆😁😄😃😀😂🙂

    …♡♡♡…

    1. Thanks so much Susan! Amen to that! Hope you’re hanging in there! Hugs and love xox

    1. Aww Linda you’re so sweet, thank you my friend. Stay well! Hugs and love xox

  19. Hi! Difficult to revisit, maybe, but there are such extraordinary and gripping aspects of what you were like, at the bottom, moments that aren’t real common in the experience I’ve had dropping by to read here, even by you, or any too many others who relate. It’s frequently brilliant.

    I like how frank you can be with your readers about how Jesus helped you when you felt low, and how you are inspired to this day. Superb composition tonight, extremely pleasant.

    1. Thank you so much Odell – i really appreciate that. I firmly believe that God allows us to go through things so that we might share them with others and offer hope and encouragement. Stay well my friend. Thanks for reading. Hugs and love xox

  20. “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10 We matter enough that God has prepared good works for us to do for each other, so that we can matter to each other.

    I recall someone once telling me I told him something that changed his life. I don’t even remember the conversation! But it mattered. I mattered to him without knowing it. We matter to people, sometimes knowing it, sometimes not.

    You matter to thousands you never hear from in ways that you’ll never know. Your support is having an impact on my life and dreams now. And we’re just talking about “first generation” mattering! What about all the people who will be affected by each of us indirectly past that first person?

    And it’s always the best when we matter, because it’s our loving response to Jesus’ sacrifice for us.

    1. Hi Jeff! oh gosh, i am seriously so touched by this – thank you 🙂 and amen to that – what a comforting truth to know that we’re His masterpiece — made in His image. And you’re right – we matter to people – and how we love others, how we show compassion, how we listen, how we care — it matters. it matters so much. i love this reflection, thank you so much!! yes! our loving response to His sacrifice. Been thinking about you, Jeff. Hope this week is a good week for you 🙂 sending hugs to you and your girls! Hugs and love xox

  21. Dear Caralyn,

    My reponse to your precious thoughts and words is a poem:

    Learning To Be Thankful

    When we have lost our normal life
    We start to long for it while mourning

    When we have lost our jobs
    We start to see what we had

    When we have lost our freedom
    Only then we start to appreciate it

    When we have lost stability of our life
    Only then we understand its meaning

    When we think we are lost
    Then we are really lost

    As we think
    So we become

    When we think that each thunderstorm will pass
    No wind can treat us as a leaf

    When all is back to normal
    We are aware – in thankfulness what we have…

    Understanding rises out of problems
    Is medicine to make us aware of our own value:
    We are all human beings
    Children of God
    Have to live in harmony together
    To bring out of us: humanity, thankfulness

    DidiArtist, 05.05.2020

    In thankfulness for your profound words, dear friend 🙂
    Didi

    1. oh wow Didi, I am so grateful for this beautiful poem. thank you for sharing it with me. you truly have a gfit. stay well! Hugs and love xox

  22. Perhaps a drastic measure but the correct measure. Too many authorities, humans trying to contain this virus. I say, open the flood gates, stop all lock downs worldwide, and watch God open the flood gates of heaven.

    1. thank you so much Stephen, for this reflection. Interesting thought indeed!! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  23. BBB,

    Powerful post. Amen, Amen & Amen! “How am I contributing to society, what can I do?” Is the exact way I felt, the moment I received the blessing of unemployment benefits. I immediately thanked God, the state of Texas, and was filled with gratitude. Next, was “what can I do to return the blessing? What can I do for my state and community?” Last week as I drove on the highway, we stopped at a small picnic rest stop..it was small, about 4 tables, worn, neglected, in need of work, paint, refinishing…and immediately opportunity came to mind.. “why dont I repaint it, restore it, fix it up..this is a place where families within the community, within my state, can come and have a picnic..my way of paying back the state.”

    There is an abundance of opportunity, where we are able to improve our communities, our state, and our nation …and do so FOR FREE.not seeking monetary payment. Instead out of JOY, and gratitude.. This type of WORK pays in blessings that just keep on coming….

    When we begin to view the day we live- with the understanding …all we do, let us do it for God.. WORK transforms from WORK to being an honor and privilege , and is more like exercising in order to build ourselves and others.. I no longer WORK, …instead I choose to SERVE Christ daily, by striving to keep my thoughts upon Him, day in and day out…and by this process all WORK manifests itself into an extraordinary glow of radiant blessings…giving and bringing GOD THE GLORYY AMEN.

    1. Hi Ben, thank you so much for this powerful reflection. I love that – how can we return the blessing. i love that so much. amen! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  24. This is such a beautiful post Caralyn. I don’t know why but it brought tears to my eyes. Thank you so much for posting this. Blessings to you my dear💜

    1. aw thank you so much!! i’m so glad it hit home with you 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 grateful for you!! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  25. One more thing.. this post you wrote was RAW and REAL..I absolutely loved it. This very day, in prayer I thanked God as tears of gratitude rolled down my face..for allowing SCUM OF THE EARTH..the lowliest of the low- like me.., how we definitely feel when we hit rock BOTTOM…BUT GUESS WHAT CARALYN..THAT ROCK BOTTOM ISNT SO BAD IS IT?

    And that’s BECAUSE THAT ROCK BOTTOM IS CHRIST HIMSELF.. as we fall
    , we fall on SOLID GROUND

    THE ROCK OF ETERNAL AGES!!!

    HALLELUAH!!! GLORRRY TO GOD! LET THE SAINTS PRAISE HIS NAME..

    LET THE GLORYYY FALL UPON US THIS DAY IN JESUS NAME.

    AMEN

    1. Ben – I have been there too. Rock bottom is a powerful place to build your life from with God at the wheel 🙂 amen!

    1. aw thank you so much Hilary!! 🙂 God is good for sure! Hugs and love xox

  26. Hi Carolyn

    Thanks for the honest thought provoking post. I am a homeschooling father, husband, life coach and part time blogger. And yesterday was one of those days, do I really matter, do I contribute? In a world of measurable s and instant gratification and feedback, it is some times difficult to stay true to yourself. As you pointed out, I am not worthy because of what I do but because of the price that was paid for me. I am not what my job description is or title, I am he who was fearfully and wonderfully made.

    Tell one, tell all Carolyn! Do not stop, you encourage many, of all walks of life and around our global village.

    God bless

    survivingbrent

    1. Hi friend, thank you so much for sharing you story – what a gift you’re giving your children!! Amen – becuase of the price He paid for us! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  27. I really appreciate the fact that you speak on topics that aren’t really touched that often. Your words are a constant reminder that we are never as alone as we feel.

    Although I am still a student and have not been working, I find that I too have been struggling with the fact that I can offer my parents, my source of financial support, little to no help. I’ve always been a bit of a perfectionist myself, so I’ve noticed that I’ve begun to compare myself to more successful students who took a traditional path. Thanks for allowing yourself to be vulnerable and sharing the love of Christ. Xx

    1. Hi Danielle! Thank you so much for your kind words fo encouragement! God’s path for you will play out just as it is supposed to 🙂 You’re right where you’re supposed to be! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  28. There is not one person in the world that was not created by God. So, if we are created by God. We matter. I loved your post because so many of become entangled in these snares that cause us to think that we don’t matter. Lies! Thanks for your authenticity and courage.

    1. you’re so so right about that! Thanks for that beautiful reminder! glad this resonated with you! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  29. More than once in conversations I’ve had the opportunity to say, “Don’t buy the lie.” And here you are with the same reminder spoken differently.
    Even back in Jesus day it is the lie that what we do is who we are and if what we do is more important that who we are, Who’s we are, then we’ve bought the lie. The lie is more than, “I’m not good enough unless _________ or _____________” it is much simpler, “I’m not lovable unless” or “I’m not worthy” or “I made big mistakes” or “I have a zit on my nose” or ” ” therefore no one can see the broken me who is worthy of being loved simply because I exist.
    Buying the lie comes at a much higher cost than what we seem to pay for it, and like a stone in a pond the ripple effect goes on, and on.
    Buying into God’s love feels costly as we are set free from the lies that bind us. As the things we’ve put into place are removed leaving us vulnerable, we want to cover them back up, not realizing that is where the Truth lives and loves, it is our deepest beauty, our first Love.
    Oh that we would invest deeply in Truth.

    Teri

    1. Hi Teri! Don’t buy the lie – oh wow — that is SO POWERFUL! I feel like I need to write that on post it notes and stick them around the house, around the community, around thw world!!! thanks for blessing me with that wisdom! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  30. Yes, we are grounded in, spring from, our Source, God, who is Love (1 John 4:8). We come from Love and are an expression of that Love. So it has nothing to do with the constructs of this world. We can definitely use those constructs, like our jobs, as instruments to express the Love of God, but what’s important is our essence as children of God. Peace, Caralyn ~ Bill

    1. You’re so right about that, bill! He is our source! thanks for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

  31. I love this post. The matter of work/job/career really are intertwined with identity. How do we want to define ourselves? Who am I? Am I a mom, a wife, a business analyst, a bus driver, a waitress? Those titles; those hats, they are so important to some people. Losing those hats in the climate we are living it can be devastating and destructive for some. Recovery; overcoming a hardship or debilitating illness is a gift of sorts because it allows one to break from the bonds of the life they had and gain perspective.

    When you were less than 80 pounds, you were given the gift of understanding and perspective. Nobody on this earth could tell you how to heal; that answer; that strength was within you. Nobody could give you the ability to heal except the Good Lord. He fashioned you and put that knowledge and strength in you. Finding those tools was his gift to you. Now that you know that, you understand nobody can help the people who are struggling with their identity now. They need to come to these truths on their own. They need to sort out their own identities. All we can do as friends and family is to pray for them and support them. Hardship brings change and in that change we find light.

    1. Hi Judith! oh gosh, thank you so much for your kind words! You’re so right – those titles have no bearing on our worth in Him. And gosh, thank you for the wonderful encouragement. God rescued me and for that I am eternally grateful. Hugs and love xox

    1. aw thank you friend – i appreciate that 🙂 glad you thought so! stay well! Hugs and love xox

    1. Hi Heather! oh that’s so awesome! i want to read it!! 🙂 stay well! Hugs and love xox

  32. as always, you have such a wonderful way of putting into words what many of us are thinking. I’m sorry about your acting and speaking gigs – hopefully those opportunities will become available again once we are out of this crisis. And I also think that using the word “essential worker” is an odd term because everyone plays a part. Happy Cinco de Mayo!

    1. thank you so much Him! oh gosh, thank you for those encouraging words – you’re right, everyone plays a part! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  33. Never cease to be amazed how open you are and your sage words for a young person, says this older person (not that age is correlated with wisdom at all). One of my favorite Bible verses is Romans 12:2, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” I quote this verse because the pressures of this world are to conform to how “it” judges us by dollar worth, job status (if you have a job now), “looks,” etc. God doesn’t judge us, doesn’t want us to conform, doesn’t want anything from us other than to LOVE. That is the true will of God and, no matter how abstract and simplistic it sounds, is a real secret to life. Be safe! Ted

    1. Hi Ted, oh gosh thank you so much!! I am so touched by that 🙂 amen to that – it really is the real secret to life! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  34. Those moments of clarity drive us to our knees. We can be so overwhelmed with shame, that we stay there, or we can crawl, then stumble forward toward the light. I’m glad that you walk in the light now.

    1. you’re so right about that ! or we can crawl! yes! Hugs and love xox

  35. This post will resonate with so many. Your beautiful writing is so raw and real. I used to get “tied up” in a “role”. And yes, we are ALL ESSENTIAL. You nailed the statistics by giving us their FACES. They are US. I claim the truth of Christ and pray for you, and for all others suffering during this time. The 50 day mark seems unreal…..oh the lessons I hope we learn. Keep going sweetheart~you’re a blessing to so many. 💚

    1. Hi KL, gosh thank you so much for your kind words. Yes! we are all essential!! They are US – amen. thanks for your encouragment!! Hugs and love xox

    1. Hi Rachel! thank you so much! i’m glad you thought so! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  36. Hi, Appreciate your Blog.
    Yes, our true worth is the price Jesus paid for us – His Life.
    Jesus thought I was worth saving.
    Blessings

    1. Hi Merryl! oh thank you so much! you’re right – He deemed us worthy! love that! stay well! Hugs and love xox

    1. thank you so much Mary! hope your week is going well! Hugs and love xox

    1. Hi Jolie! oh thank you so much 🙂 glad you thought so!! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  37. Thank you for writing this. In the past few years, when I was looking for work out in the community, I was told that only getting a job and making money matters. Yesterday, someone asked me, “why do you have a business coach and a caseworker?” It finally hit me that I don’t care if I make a dime off of my YouTube or blog. I really do love writing and shooting YouTube videos. I would be happy if I did make an income from that. However, I’ve been living with my grandpa for 15 years; and he has provided for me. In all truth, it’s Jesus that provides. That’s one thing that make me upset about my caseworker and business coach. They just see value in work and money. I agree with work is important, but serving Jesus is more important.

    1. Hi Amanda! you’re on a reading roll! thank you so much! i appreciate you sharing that – you’re right – it’s Jesus that provides. such powerful insight. Hugs and love xox

  38. This is such a loaded question, one that I’ve grappled with for way too long. It took getting sober after a painful relapse to realize I AM worthy. I DO matter. This post brought back a lot and put me in a place of gratitude. Thank you Caralyn 💗

    1. Thanks so much Lisa for sharing that powerful perspective. You’re right – you are worthy and do matter. And I am right there with ya – sometimes it takes going through a storm to realize those important truths. I’m so glad God delivered us both from those places. Love you friend. Hugs and love xox

  39. Thank you for sharing! It’s incredibly courageous of you to share your story. My working situation is…unsteady…at the moment and I definitely needed to hear those words. Wishing you the best and that you and loved ones are safe!

    – Matt

  40. a very ‘felt’ post, at least for me, I basically locked myself down for years because I was the “chosen” son to succeed, I had the mantle, the talent, the drive, the … well, life doesn’t always work out, and when you are the ‘all’ there is no way to live up to that, even if those around you maybe did not totally mean you should be the ‘one’, the ‘all’, the pressure and message was there, it is a difficult thing to understand we are who we are, and fact is I am better off than most (I do work my butt off, 6 days a week for years), but it is easy to loose our perspective of those who have less, which is so many, even if I worked my ass off it does not mean I can not help those who need it now, we all need help, or love (compassion) at some time, it is all washed in the times or daily life, but any one of us can be struck down, as insulated as we may think we are, even now during this, even as close as it all seems now, we all will fall, we need to be the ones to catch each other.

    1. Hi David, thank you for sharing your story. You’re so right, we’re all in this journey together and what a beautiful thing to help others along the way. Loved your reflection. Hugs and love xox

  41. We have many questions now and will even more later on. There is just so much going and simultaneously not going on at the same time which is quite unnerving to say the least. Be we have all been affected by this and somehow we must pull through this and get back to some normal means of existence. Take care, stay safe, stay hopeful!

    1. Thank you friend – you’re right, unnerving to say the least!! Stay safe my friend! Hugs and love xox

  42. At first I wanted to refrain from commenting to see whether you would notice.. LOL.

    You hit the nail on the head Caralyn. All most people want out of life is to matter – to know that they are important. I think that one of the most common things for someone is to find their purpose – a reason for existing, living. Here are the questions that are most commonly asked..
    Am I unique? Am I important? If I cease to exist, would anyone even notice?..
    We devote much of our lives to make sure that the answers to all 3 is “Yes” and more often than not, the only answer we get is, “No”.
    Caralyn, you got it spot on. Because as long as we look to the world to get our “Yes”, it comes with a large caveat – “Prove it”. And we spend much of our lives trying to…

    God said it the best…

    “Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” (Matt 6:26)

    “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny?h Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31So do not be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” (Matt 10:29 -30)

    1. You’re so right about that! Those three questions are what most people spend their life trying to find affirming answers to, but you hit the nail on the head with those verses — God already answered it for us, and it is a resounding YES! thank you friend for stopping by and sharing your heart! (Sorry it took a little longer than usual to reply! been going through some *stuff* lol Stay well! Hugs and love xox

      1. Well.. if you ever need friend to talk to (other than your wise and awesome parents), I’m willing to listen.

      2. thank you again 🙂 hahah they are pretty dang awesome 🙂

    1. Aw thank you so much Mulyale! I appreciate your encouraging words! Hugs and love xox

  43. We were too busy for our families. Our identity was in what we made our confidence in who we were. We had everything but in true sense had nothing. We made a living but had no life, we build homes but broke families, Corona is that stop sign made for us to re-evaluate life so what matters and if we are to remain first God has to come before

    1. Wow you’re on a reading roll! Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this. You’re right – it has been a blessing in disguise to reevaluate! stay well! Hugs and love xox

  44. What a great post Caralyn, I commend you for being so authentic and asking those questions that, as you said, we often do not want to ask. We all want to matter. We were designed with a need for impact, to have our lives matter as part of God’s eternal plan. And we often try to place our worth or value in things we do, and not on what has been done for us. Reminds me of my post a Christmas:

    http://voiceshepherd.home.blog/2019/12/26/unworthy-but-worth-it/

    1. Oh gosh thank you so much 🙂 Amen – and it’s a comfort to know that He has a plan for each and every one of us. And big or small those plans may seem, they matter. To the highest degree. His highest. Looking forward to reading your post! Hugs and love xox

  45. Too many people have put way too much stock in whether or not they matter for their company. Supposedly, I “matter” and I’m fortunate to be working from home. But 3 weeks in, I was on a phone call with my supervisor who essentially told me I was doing crappy and need to focus more and to just kick my kids out of my room that I’m working in. (My kids are 2 and 3 years old….). So yea, I don’t care that I’m considered “essential” – they still don’t actually care about me. 🙁 This whole world needs to re-think quite a few things! Love to everyone who’s been affected by this! YOU ALL MATTER!

    1. Hi Kelly, oh gosh I’m so sorry that you had to hear that from your supervisor. It sounds like you’re juggling a lot, and I’m sorry that person didn’t recognize that. I do!! 🙂 Stay well my friend!!!!!! You’re a superhero! Hugs and love xox

  46. Beautiful! Thank you for sharing. It’s not easy putting yourself “out there.” By doing so, you show the fruit of surrender. You are willing to share your hardest moments in order that others know how great He is, how near He is. So, others realize the illusion the world offers as it markets purpose through popularity, beauty, fame and perfection. You are making a big difference during disappointing times!!! Keep writing!!! Keep influencing!! Big ((((HUGS)))!!!

    1. Hi friend! oh gosh thank you so much – you’re right – He is so near to us during this time of trial! thanks for stopping by! bigbig hugs back to ya! xoxo

  47. You nailed it! The only solid thing to stand on that doesn’t change and can’t be taken away, is that He loves us no matter what the circumstances or losses or job titles is or isn’t. So glad you survived your journey to the dark places. You are a light.

    1. aw thank you Teresa! you’re so absolutely right about that! and gosh what a kind thing to say, thank you 🙂 Hugs and love xox

  48. You make an amazing observation “What does it mean that I’m not essential? Aren’t we all essential? And if not, then what does that mean about me?”

    For decades in our education system we have been telling everyone we are all essential, all the same, intellectually, physically, and recently even biologically. Now students are told they are non-essential to stay home and stay away from friend and classmates. Recent incidents in the news seem to suggest student suicides are (social distancing for teens really) on the rise significantly.

    Parents wold do well to remind their children that God created all mankind in HIS image Genesis 1:27, That we are all equal (no discrimination) Galatians 3:28 in His eyes. That all comfort, joy, love and even our true sense of being essential all stems from our relationship with Christ Philippians 2:1-30.

    1. Thank you so much for sharing your heart onthis. Amen – all created in HIS image! Hugs and love xox

  49. Wonderful post Caralyn, you are doing wonderful things with what you learned from the pain and suffering in your past. Keep up the good work. “We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose.” Rom. 8:28

    1. Thank you so much David, I really appreciate your kind words. Yes! I love that verse so much – thanks for sharing! stay well! Hugs and love xox

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