What. Is. Happening …?!
This is no doubt a commonly held question while journeying through the bad acid trip we call 2020. Covid. Riots. Election Fraud. Every day it seems we’re sharing a communal cocktail of anger, confusion and isolation, and now they’re talking about closing schools again and keeping the sheeple in masks ‘til Spring. Sweet mother.
I’ve always had a very casual relationship with reality. It takes a lot to phase me, and I can pretty much always ‘big picture it,’ removing my focus from a temporal problem while focusing on what really matters. These traits are also signs of dissociative disorder, but so far, it’s worked out.
However just the other morning, I cracked… thanks to Good Morning America and most likely the estrogen.
My early-rising husband needs his local weather every morn, which then transmutes to Good Morning America by the time I meander down to speed-pour my caffeine. Which is quite a morning feat, since I cannot stand even the smallest dose of liberally-biased media.
As a former newspaper reporter holding our First Amendment sacred, witnessing outlets like NPR succumb to outward censorship is like being a vegan forced to lunch daily at a Brazilian steakhouse. I’m not a vegan and I love meat on a stick, but I imagine it’d be nothing less than unbearable.
Most mornings I can at least make toast while stomaching the umpteenth report on the latest Covid spike, or new holiday face mask trends, and some ridiculous segment on how Covid is affecting out pets (I wish I was kidding). But for whatever reason, this particular morning broke me.
“What the HECK KIND OF CRACK ARE THESE LOBOTOMITES SMOKING?! HOOOOW CAN YOU WATCH THIS FEAR MONGERING GARBAGE??!”
Silence from husband.
Me: “Babe, are you over there?”
“I think you should go back up and have your quiet time.”
Me: “Yeah. Okay.”
It wasn’t the worst outburst he’s seen in recent months. Mighta had an episode or two recently after reading about a mother getting tased for not wearing a mask at her son’s outdoor sporting event. But I did feel the need to check my spirit.
The truth is, in this especially challenging season, it’s getting VERY tempting to lose faith, and maintain the unfaltering joy and peace that would be perpetually ours if we don’t let the enemy rob us.
We’re all dealing with so many different sources of frustration, from financial strain or family issues, to isolation-based loneliness, so it’s easy to give way to self-pity, fear and defeat. But that’s exactly where the enemy wants us. Just standing there in your pj’s, waging threats at Robin Roberts while your spouse questions his relationship choices.
So after much meditation on scripture, I’ve found a few of the most powerful truths that help us “live above the fray” and operate above the madness.
Fix your eyes on Him.
If all we’re listening to is the fear peddling media and doom -and-gloom friends all day (you know, the ones constantly saying…”just wait ‘til flu season comes!”) then of course we’re gonna stress. Try and spend more time in prayer, meditating on promises of God’s goodness and provision. “Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the LORD your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.” Deuteronomy 31:6.
This is supposed to happen.
We’re not living in these times by coincidence. It may seem like our reality is utter chaos, but if we believe God has a plan for our life- where, when, to whom we’ll be born, he’s equipped for every day we face. God’s not responsible for the trials we’re facing -pandemics, job loss, and missing vital life moments like graduations and birthday parties-but he does give us the power and insight to handle it all. God is always working for our good, even when we can’t see it. He’s not surprised by the pandemic or violent outbreaks or the war on human life, so the key is growing our trust in Him, instead of focusing on the muck around us.
Remember where our peace comes from
I know Covid is real. And the political arena could not be more of a cluster. But people are treating a flu with a 99.9 percentage survival rate as if it’s literally raining leprosy. And I have friends I fear might overdose on their uppers if Trump wins the election. My Facebook has transmuted into a digitized, adult temper tantrum because sadly, so much of our security and hope stems from the wrong source. If we’re not rooted and grounded in the Lord, instead placing our trust and identity in political policy and governmental authority, of course we’re going to lose our minds in worry and rage.
And it goes both ways. I almost popped a varicose vein watching liberals attempt to sabotage the nomination of now-Justice Amy Coney Barrett the other day ’til the Holy Spirit nudged me to ‘re-center.’ Sigh. The second we find ourselves on a downward spiral based on the external, it’s a red flag to reconnect with God. “And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 4:7
This too, shall pass.
There’s a season for everything. For the good and bad, the only thing that remains constant is Him. This insanity will be over eventually. It’s the question of “when?” that’s the killer. Every mother to walk the planet knows the only thing getting us through that last trimester is knowing we will indeed see our ankles again in a month. But this is where faith comes in. The world could be on fire, and God would still be in control. These times of trial could God’s showing us how to depend on Him like we should’ve all along. And when our world finally becomes normal again, I’m sure we’ll appreciate the simple gifts of life so much more than ever. Being able to hug friends at church. Inviting everyone to the kids’ games. Squishing into to a crowded concert and not ever, ever, passing a lone hiker wearing full PPT gear as if the ‘Rona could fly into an eardrum.
I might be so elated at the end of it all, I’ll be able to share oatmeal ang laughs with my Good Morning America friends. Most likely not, but cheers to the idea, and God speed, 2021.