If you are like many people, you probably are looking forward to a new year… a fresh new start, a year hopefully without the tragedies and hardships of 2020. Undoubtedly, the tragedy and loss is great. But is the point really to simply move back into a more comfortable existence; like BC, (Before Covid)?
If that’s our hope and aspiration for the New Year, we may well be dissapointed. You see, this is a bigger example of “destination orientation”. Something bad happens and we just want to get “back to normal”. THEN… everything will be F.I.N.E.
I will submit to you that …that would be a mistake. There is nothing out there anywhere to suggest that we will be doing that any time soon. The term “the new normal” has been put out there in terms of Covid, but it goes beyond that. The issue is not covid, it’s us. How do we handle what happens in this life? Are we so narcissistic as a society that we think and believe that God, or “the universe”, owes us to get us “back to our comfort zones?”
No. If we miss the point, which is, this life is not all there is; I am not in control; My comfort is not paramount; The United States is not as impervious as we thought; Life is much more fragile than we thought… we at the very least will be deeply disappointed, disillusioned, and lost.
God is hoping we will pay attention and wake up, whatever that means to us as individuals. If we only want to get “back to normal”, and everything that doesn’t line up with my sense of normal is a nuisance, I am missing it. I need to grow, learn, mature, and get closer to my loved ones, God and others through these difficult seasons. God actually wants to EXPAND our vision beyond ourselves for the greater benefit of others.
So the question is, will my “New Year’s Resolutions” be driven by striving to “get back to normal,” or, “God, I surrender my way, my will. Start with me in the new year. Work in my heart; make me less selfish, more giving… more others and God focused. I trust You in the coming year, and help me to let go of my preconceived notions of how I think it’s ‘supposed to be.’ I’m willing to let go of my demand to be comfortable and allow all difficulty to form and shape me into the person I am meant to be.”
This is a “dangerous”, but life giving prayer. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger!