Maybe it’s the circles I run in, but it seems everyone is experiencing some kind of challenge right now, and if you personally are not, then there’s a high likelihood someone close to you is.
With so much hurt and chaos swirling around it’s easy to fall into this idea that the whole of humanity is on a ship with no captain. I had to check myself, wondering if it feels this way just because there are so many places we hear about hard things: 24 hour news cycles, social media, news feeds tailor-made to deliver only stories of peril and pandemonium. But I must admit, that is not the case. I’m talking about real live human beings that I come into contact with who tell me their own painful stuff. They didn’t just pick this up from Twitter, and neither did I.
So what do we do when we can’t control the seemingly out of control?
I think one answer is to lean in to our own limitations. Friends, we were never meant to save the world. Not one dang one of us. Surely we are meant to move the stick forward on the way to restoring the world to God’s perfect kingdom: a conversation here, a cure there, congressional acts and acts of kindness included. But we were never tasked with completing the job in our lifetimes. Which means if you are placing all your hope in having the world righted before you hand it off to the next generation, well let’s just say you’ll have another hurt coming.
Human beings are so good, you guys. We so badly want things to be better. And if we don’t have the first clue about how to actually get out and fix the pain of the world, well then we are over-achievers when it comes to worrying about it, talking about it, relaying stories about it, wringing our hands over it, and sending ourselves into despair over it.
But let’s don’t.
Let’s don’t place all that on our shoulders when the shoulders of the one who can ACTUALLY carry the pain of the world are wide and strong and meant for just such a thing as this. We feel an urgency. We use words like crisis and tipping point and chaos, when the truth is that the same Spirit that hovered over the chaos and ordered it, is here even now. Even in the midst of our generation’s crazy, God is with us.
As I look out my window which frames the beauty of Mt. Sopris, the clouds are gathering. A storm is brewing and the snow-capped peak is being enveloped in a dark gray cloud. In a few minutes the heaviness of the cloud will descend and completely obscure the mountain. And yet the mountain remains. It’s not just that I HOPE the mountain will return, I KNOW it will. With that same faith, I know the earth and all that is in it will be restored. We work while we are here, moving it forward inch by inch, but our hope comes in knowing that God is the Restorer of all things, the Orderer of chaos, the Savior of the world. We do what we can, but it is not ours to complete nor ours to bear. Take that heavy burden off your shoulders, and busy yourself with the one small thing you can do today to bring light to the hurt you see and the pain your may be feeling.