Somber: solemn, grave, serious, toned-down, subdued.
These words are all synonyms that I found for the word “somber” when I looked it up in the thesaurus, their were some others that indicated a much more intense meaning, but this subdued list will work for my purposes here.
The line between despair and hope is a very thin and fragile line for me.
Why are you cast down, O my soul,
and why are you in turmoil within me?
Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,
my salvation and my God.
Psalm 42:5 & 11 and 43:5
Some days I have a really hard time responding to the question posed in this verse, at least in the same way that the psalmist does here. I think that is easy for you (the psalmist) to say, but honestly some days I am just not there, because on many days I find myself on the despair side of that thin, fragile line between despair and hope. Sure I have many days where I am on the hope side of that line as well. My problem lies though in the fact that I indeed spend all or most of my time on one side of that line or the other. Either in a state of despair or a state of hope, the lows of despair can drag me down into a state of utter depression and the highs of hope can to a state of extreme joy. While some may say that is just the way life works, it really does not “work” that well for me at all, these dramatic swings wear me out physically, emotionally and spiritually. I am left so tired that there are days when I can barely function, so I either work at staying in a state, of despair or hope, because the swing in the other direction in tearing me apart. When I am sad I battle with the idea of staying sad, saying it is just so much easier to stay here than to deal with the extreme swing into hope and joy. On the opposite side, once I am experiencing that state of hope and joy, I almost immediately try to quench it or put it out so that it does not become too high, so that my fall will not be too hard.
So I work really hard at staying on that thin, fragile line between despair and hope, for me it has become a place called somber, a place without highs or lows where I find myself more at peace, more able to cope from moment to moment, from day to day.
Because I know that there will inevitably be times where those swings which cause me so much pain will happen, for that is life. But if today I seem to be a bit somber to you, know that I am at home, in my place called somber and there I am at peace.