Updated: Feb 15
Someone said to me the other day they feel like they’ve lived five years here in 2020, and it’s only September.
Is there a spiritual perspective that can help us find firm footing in this year?
In other words, where can we find God in the unknown, the unexpected and the unplannable?
One thing I know for certain: If you continue to expect normal to return, then you, Beloved, have set the bar of expectation much too low.
What if we saw the challenges of 2020 as an opportunity for growth, for restoration, for a deeper understanding of how we are all intricately bound one to another?
Because it is indeed here.
That type of shift begins when we shift our thinking and embrace a new awareness of 2020, one that accepts:
Nothing is normal.
Nothing ever stays the same.
Nothing in life is guaranteed.
Longing for normal is a natural human reaction when we find ourselves looking at our lives and not recognizing any aspect of it. But normal also often plants us into our comfort zone where empathy is suffocated by the lull of complacency, and the cries of the hurting are silenced by the numbing effects of habits that detach us from humanity.
Normal also would mean we forget what this pandemic has taught us: essential workers are found in grocery stores; supply chains are fragile; education can be hybridized; and businesses can think outside of the box by creating at-home workplaces.
What has changed in your life that is inviting you to reconsider what normal really is? No doubt you have been impacted on a personal level. How? Many of us have been impacted professionally and financially, but what about emotionally, mentally and spiritually?
Depression is skyrocketing, and our places of community are limited, cutting off the very thing that humans crave ...
But there is an invitation here to reimagine community, and many have stepped up and accepted that invitation. Churches now are online, forums are digital, and restaurants, which in another space and time would never even have considered carry-out, also deliver.
Where have you found community?
How have you found ways to address what may be rising for you?
What coping mechanisms have you used to ground yourself and give you peace?
It is easy to reach for maladaptive coping mechanisms.
That isn’t judgment, Beloved.
It’s human nature.
Excessive food or drink, binge-watching television, endless scrolling through social media …
If you didn’t reach for one of those, what has or hasn’t worked for you?
What if we intentionally moved to find God in the chaos of this moment by trying something that may not feel normal, but may actually give us exactly what we need in this moment?
Is journaling a sacred act that can help you process this 2020 experience?
How about letters to God when prayers won’t come?
What if we picked up a book to read about spirituality that moves us out of our belief experiences?
Where are others congregating — and by congregating I mean online — to discuss, learn and support one another and to stretch beyond the maladaptive coping mechanisms that do little for stabilizing us to face our lives again?
Where can God be found when nothing but chaos reigns, where nothing is plannable and nothing looks like your life?
What if we accept that we may not ever know the answer to this question, but the journey to explore the possibilities is actually what your soul is longing for … not the binge-watching.
The Holy is here.
Sacred wisdom is here.
God is here, Beloved.
And waiting for us to accept the gift of peace and grace that is being offered when we let go of the need to see what lies at the end of this tunnel known as 2020.
This unknown is gently nudging us to be uncomfortable by opening ourselves to new ideas and new ways to cope with challenging times.