I woke to a puff of fur nuzzled against me warm and trusting. The contrast was palpable. Outside the bustling world with all its battle wounds was rearming for another round. I forced myself from my safe cocoon and triumphed over the act of making my bed- a tiny success. Breathing inaudible prayers, I reminded myself my family is well, we have a lot by world’s standards- and that “this too shall pass.” My husband flicked on the news and the anchor’s voice instantly grate on my nerves as she provided a litany of negative morsels for me to chew on or spit out. So much, too much, how much? I wondered silently. I decided to spit and turned off the tv.
Being 6 months into a pandemic and reading about another shooting last night during protests, I had to STOP. Stop digesting the ugly, stop absorbing the poison, stop believing it will always be this way. Yes, it is happening, yes, it is real, yes, I cannot stop it all. I don’t want to deny the truth of events, yet I don’t want them to harden or jade me either.
I read a devotional seeking spiritual asylum from my weary shell. I am reminded the only power I can exert is over my attitude. Attitude, blasted attitude! I have been sparring and wrestling with it for decades. By sheer will, I demand change yet slide right back into the muck of its dark puddle. Seems I am an old dog forgetting my hard learned tricks. I am like the man who keeps looking at his face in the mirror forgetting what he looks like.
Arriving at work, I reached for my belongings from the backseat of the car. WHAM! Right in the bullseye! I’m struck between the eyes by the contents of my bag- a heavy, wooden picture frame. I winced and got completely still. “Okay, okay,!” I cried to no one. Darkness flees and I am feeling Harry Potter “stupefied.” Yes, my face hurt but it was the knock to the head I needed. Yep, I am an old dog, but my tricks are still with me. I remembered it’s not HOW I feel but WHAT I tell myself: that God is for me, not against me; He asked me to be IN the world but not OF the world; We have gotten through much darker, personal storms already; He is ever present in good AND bad times; He promised a glorious future and all I have to do is hang on. Even if it requires a punch to the face. 🙂