A lot of the time, I’m a major sad sack.
A lot of you, probably almost all of you, do not know this about me.
In all likelihood, some article discussing the world’s best kept secrets has at number 1 “Andrew Kinsella is a sad sack a lot of the time.”
Most of you understand that I smile all the time. Usually, I don’t even know why I am smiling. Although there are the many moments where I am genuinely happy while smiling, I am unfazed or indifferent toward it all the other moments. This doesn’t always mean that I doubt my own unconscious ability of having and spreading joy, if that’s what you call it (and don’t get me wrong, I am guilty of this sometimes). It most often means that I know the path I’ve been through to get to the point where I can smile constantly, and oh boy, it’s a painful one.
People see me as a happy guy, but I almost never see myself that way.
I’ve been through some crap (or if you’re southern, stuff). My parents went through a divorce, which took waaaaaay too long to settle, and I hardcore resented a lot of people for most of that time. I’ve been through depression, which is always a well kept secret by anyone that has it until they finally can’t take the fact that it is secret. I’ve been unhappy for such long periods of time before that, when I did feel happy again, it felt really weird. It’s reasons such as these why I view myself differently.
Obviously there’s a caveat (at least toward understanding me), where if I’m smiling, it doesn’t necessarily mean I’m happy.
However, it’s not terrible that I’m a sad sack. In fact, now that I don’t really deal with depression anymore, I am very welcoming of sadness. Sadness is the emotion that reminds me that I have a heart, or even that I can feel anything. It also reveals to me that I’ve loved something or someone enough that it made me feel sadness toward it when it disappeared or in some way wronged you.
As you continue to chase God as he chases you, more things will burden you, especially considering that God desires to chase everyone to an infinitely grand extent, and frequently with no response. God would love it if everybody could make it to heaven, but many won’t, so of course God has reason to feel sad.
Sadness gives us an understanding of pain, and a gateway toward stronger empathy toward others. Ultimately nobody wants to feel pain, and sadness helps with the belief that we don’t want others to deal with pain either. There is no shame in being sad. In fact, our sadness makes us stronger.
I would never wish the things that have caused you sadness upon anyone, considering that some of it can be traumatic. Everything that causes pain is a tall hurdle in our path anyway, and that’s not something we can jump over and leave behind under our own power. (Grieving is okay. If you didn’t do it upon the loss of something or the negative impact of something on you, I would strongly question your emotional capacity. Ultimately we must continue the race though.) We have a God that has overcome the world, whose right hand can destroy any enemy regardless of how intimidating it is. That hurdle in your way that you cannot jump over successfully under your own power requires just a tiny step from Him.
I am also not saying that I’ve been through more than any of you. I am more so frightened because I feel like what I have been through has been vastly more insignificant insofar as the pain it has caused. However, that’s one of the wonderful things about God: nothing is too insignificant!
Meanwhile, I will continue to smile. Sometimes I will feel happy while other times I won’t. Ultimately this is an attempt at becoming more open and honest about myself, and sometimes I get too emotional to do so in person.
Sadness isn’t a bad thing.