At times I don’t know what to write about, only that I need to write. Much of my life stays the same – even the slight alterations to my schedule are routine – so I often am at a loss for words. But this morning my mind slipped into heavy pondering after I skimmed the news on Facebook.
There was a post about a sweet friend’s upcoming surgery to remove a malignant tumor in her brain; the celebration of Planned Parenthood’s centennial and a reminder of the gruesome acts that have been committed behind its closed doors; and the brutal torture, crucifixion, and beheading of 11 Christians (including one child) in Aleppo, Syria. My tendency is to allow survival mode to kick in: grieve for a moment, breathe a quick prayer, and then review my to-do list for the day. Yet today I couldn’t do that. Instead, I was convicted to the very center of my being for how flippantly I live my life.
I realize that I cannot go to Syria and rescue my Christian family members from their tragic fate (though the tragedy may be only temporal); I cannot singlehandedly end abortion; and I cannot guarantee the desired outcome of my friend’s surgery. I realize all of that; but does that realization excuse me to play in the shallows of life each day? It may not be evil for me to make my housework the main priority of my day, but is it actually good for me to do so, for example? And what about the fact that when I awake in the morning my first thoughts usually go to how tired I am because of how many times my sleep was interrupted during the night, how frustrated I am that the cat threw up near my bed, or how many things are on my list for the day? Why do I spend so much time trying to figure out how I can squeeze in 30 minutes of extra sleep in the morning rather than calculating how early I can rise for prayer and Bible reading?
These challenges are common ones in the western world where our biggest concerns are malfunctioning Iphones, transgender bathroom usage, and rising taxes. Just skim your Facebook newsfeed and you’ll be bombarded with photos of people’s meals, frustrations and feuds, or family vacations – mine will be among them. 🙂 Again, I’m not saying that any of these things are wrong only that they may insulate us from the harshness of life and death just a plane trip away. The media makes no attempt to pierce our insulation and, in fact, does everything it can to strengthen it. What is the answer if there even is one?
Personally, I am going to embrace this morning’s conviction and seek to make small improvements each day. I am going to make morning devotions the highest priority of my day; I will continue to read alternative news sources so that I am receiving a balanced diet of current events; I am going to make a point of donating financial resources to those who are in need; and when the minor frustrations of my day rise as mountains in my mind, I am going to remember that they are actually only molehills. In addition to these resolutions, it is also important to remember that the priorities of faith and family never change. Savoring them each day makes every day one well lived.
What are your thoughts?