By Jackie Beauchene: I have dreams, like everyone else.  But sometimes life takes you to the bottom first, with nowhere to go but up.  The outcome of our lives isn't based on the struggles, but on what you do with them.

My husband and I rely on help right now.  We are deep in financial debt and gasping for air, and it's too late to undo our mistakes. We didn't even realize it until we were at the bottom.

I thank God for help.

All we can do right now is take responsibility for our actions and work on climbing out of the pit.  Sometimes an arm reaches through the darkness -- an arm of grace.  It offers warmth after that cold feeling of being on the bottom. Other times, arms of judgement reach through, shoving us down and reminding us just how cold the pit still is.

But those arms of grace keep us fighting.  They're a reminder of how things could be.  They're arms of generosity, and understanding, and encouragement, and kind words.  They come from people I love, and from complete strangers.  One kind word is all it takes to change my perspective, and I go from falling to flying.

Allow me to speak to you who are also falling, and to be the kind word right now. Allow me to reflect some of the grace that others, and God, have shown me.  When I was young, I never dreamed of poverty. I dreamed of soaring, and that is exactly what I am going to keep doing -- dreaming of something better.

May you be a dreamer too. May others' acts of grace be your ray of hope, and may you continue to move towards it.  Together, we can overcome, one warm act of grace at a time.

In my frantic quest for success, I lost sight of what success really is.  It takes a little falling apart to get a new perspective, and I see now that success is not measured by what the others say about me -- but by the grace I'm able to show others.

Won't you show someone some grace today, and be the ray of light they need?