clarity

For the past 3 years I have struggled with my faith. I have had moments where I felt a breakthrough or a shift. To only fall right back into that pit of uneasiness, anger and doubt. I would say I have spent 75% of the last 3 years feeling like I am at the bottom of this incredibly tall mountain and after strenuous climbing through the thicket, I look back to see how far I’ve come and realize I’m still at the bottom. And each time I fight and climb forward, feeling as if the top has to be just around this boulder, I look back and no longer see the bottom, and yet I see no end at the top. I feel stuck in this position, I can’t go forward and yet I can’t go back. I could give up, and just fall back down the mountain, but what damage would that cause? 

Today we are going through a COVID-19 pandemic. I have spent the last several weeks or months, I’ve lost count how long this thing has been going on, not really stressing to the full extent everyone else has. Do I take it seriously? Sure. Do I think I will be impacted? Not so sure, but definitely not so effected that my life would drastically change. Now my job is most likely going to close due to this rapid spread and dental offices being at the front line of potential risk. Now, I feel the weight of this virus. I’m looking at the potential for no income, racking up credit card debit to just survive however long this crazy episode is going to endure. Having to sit down and discuss with my preteen why his school closed for the rest of the semester, why this virus is dangerous and who to, and the precautions we as a family are taking and the potential impact as well as discussing the mass chaotic response from the nation, and most importantly addressing the very clear fear on his face. Now this is effecting my home. My fear has increased just slightly. I worry for my family members who are older, the ones with immune disorders and the ones with pre-existing conditions that put them at risk. I worry about my mother who is surrounded by the outbreak in Johnson county, who is at risk, and potentially without help should a lockdown or quarantine ensue. 

Through all this I have maintained a calm. Since Logan died, I’ve kind of had this motto, when in my healthy state of mind, that we will make it through. I can’t guarantee how we make it, but we will one way or another. There isn’t anything I can change about certain events in life and I just have to walk through them allowing it to evolve. This is no different. Can I change all this? Nope, sure can’t. Can I sit at home and stress the hell out about what is to come? Yup, sure can. But the real question is, what is that going to do for me? Is that going to solve my problems? Is that going to save me? Is that going to keep our source of income, food on the table or a roof over our heads? The answer is no. What it will do is cause hysteria in my household. The troupes will follow me in my chaos. My child will learn to respond to fear and chaos with fear and chaos. Is that the generation I want to help build? Nope, sure isn’t. 

I would say 80% of the time now when people say “God has a plan” or “God will take care of us” I just roll my eyes. It’s not that I don’t believe in God, or perhaps that’s something I’ve been struggling with since Logan died. I think people use those as “catch phrases”, they don’t really understand the weight or meaning behind them. Last night, I gave in a little to that anxiety of “what is the world coming to?” After hearing from my boss about our impending shut down, the schools deciding to close the buildings for the remainder of the school year. We went to the nearly empty grocery store, not to stock pile, but to buy for at least 2 weeks as we were running low. It was eerily quiet in there. Kind of post-apocalyptic like in the movies. After putting all the groceries away, I just sat for a minute, trying to mentally catch a breathe. This is all surreal. BUT as I sat down this morning, finally deciding I needed to somehow engage with God, I started reading my book “Don’t Give Up” by Kyle Idleman. As I read a few pages, I felt a calm. One I haven’t felt in a while. And it was like I had this huge “aha” moment. I have been so “go with the flow” with this pandemic, because we will make it through. I have no doubt that somehow we will make it through. And I believe that because I believe God will take care of us. Because I believe “God will take care of us.” I haven’t said or believed those words in 3 years. But it proved to me, that no matter where I am with my faith and in my relationship with God, deep down I still have faith that God will handle my shit. 

Now, that doesn’t mean I believe that everything will be peachy. I don’t believe by saying he will take care of things, that he will make everything okay. That just means, that if I should die, or Wyatt or Josh, I know they are going to Heaven, IE taken care of. That means if shit gets rough, I eventually know where my life will lead. I can’t focus on the negativity surrounding this pandemic. I have to focus on my household, on my faith. I can’t control the world. I can only control my world. So I’m choosing to find the positive, the light, the hope. I’m choosing to take this “aha” moment and grasp it like a guide rope hopefully up this mountain. I just pray it doesn’t take 3 more years to get to the top!

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