|Posted by firstname.lastname@example.org on November 28, 2018 at 9:45 PM|
November a Time of Change and Transition: Refocusing to Find Order and Peace in Our Lives
November has been an interesting month! For starters, in November, we as a nation held the midterm elections, made changes in Congress, witnessed the fires in California, stood in awe at the continued unrest at the US/Mexico border, and heard reports of several other shootings in the streets of our cities. America it seems was not slowly moving towards the end of the year, but there instead seems to be a continued spirit of unrest in our country. In my opinion, order and peace seem to evade us and instead there seems to be a constant stream of negative news at the local, state, national, and international levels.
For many, as we ran to and fro for the recent Thanksgiving holiday, buying what we really did not need or could ill-afford, overeating, overspending, and for some overdrinking. It seems apparent to me that we all might need to collectively stop to unwind, figure out what is in our control, and take steps to ascertain how to best address the needs of our families, friends, and our immediate community. Not that the world is not our stage, but life is chaotic enough within our homes and communities, that if we were honest, we would say, we all have our hands full.
To add to this spirit of unrest, on my side of the world, I lost a 30-year-old niece in November. What a blow! Death is never a welcomed visitor and we know that the grave is never satisfied (Proverbs 30: 16-19), but losing a loved one is never easy. It is worse when they are young and vibrant with young children. As humans, we have many questions, we blame ourselves, we think, and think again about what we could have done differently while going through the stages of grief. These stages are many and might not even be cyclical, but include denial, anger, depression, bargaining, and acceptance. So, I have moved through the phases and after much prayer and tears have found some semblance of peace, but know that our lives are never the same.
So, how does one find peace and order in one’s life, whether their dis-peace is related to issues affecting the nation or death in one’s family? I believe that this happens in a few ways and I will share these here, but would love to hear from you about approaches that work for you as well. First, I think that it is important to realize what we can or cannot control. Whether wildfires, the election and its outcomes, or death in our families, these are all outside of our control. Next, we must continue to pray for our families, friends, leaders, nation and world, so that we can have a godly and peaceful life. Then, we must acknowledge the sovereignty of God over all things of creation. Often we can’t understand why we would lose a vibrant 30-year-old niece, but I have realized that there are some things that I will never understand this side of eternity. So, I have learned to trust God’s heart when I can’t see or understand his plans. Finally, I have learned to accept the blame if I am at fault, but work hard to quickly forgive myself and others, since life is short and living in unforgiveness about any issue or offense someone might have caused, is not an option.
What are your thoughts about these ideas?
Would love to hear from you.