Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Helpless, Not Hopeless?

With all that is going on in the world that seems unfair to me, it is difficult for me to feel HOPEful when I feel HELPless. I feel very limited in my options to do anything in response to the wrongs I see happening. I talk to the TV, which is pointless. I express my opinions to those who are willing to hear, yet the ones who I wish would hear are not listening.

Last night at Bible study, John was explaining to us about struggling with scripture. He said something like, "When we start to struggle with scripture, that's when we begin to grow." Someone said, "Yes, but it seems like there's never resolution... you never find the answers." He replied with, "It's not the answer that grows you; it's the struggle." (conversation paraphrased)

Since that conversation, I've been mulling over the "struggle." It's a struggle to understand the perspective of others who don't agree with you. It's a struggle to remain hopeful when the world seems to be falling into chaos around you.

In her blog today, Cindy Ryan said, "If we look too long or too hard on what is happening and what people are saying, we will be lost in anger, paralyzed by fear." I'm trying to find a way to avoid getting stymied by anger. Perhaps settling into the struggle is the answer.

For the past year, I've repeated the words, "I'm holding loosely." What I mean by that is that I'm holding loosely to things that, if I hold onto tightly, will create anxiety. I'm holding loosely to "the way we've always done things." I'm holding loosely to my own self-image (who I am, who I think I am, who I want to be, how I want to be perceived, whether it matters). When people ask how things are going at work, I'm holding loosely (things aren't the same, but that doesn't mean they're bad).

So maybe the answer for me moving forward is to hold loosely. Struggle through the anger and the chaos and the misunderstanding and the unfairness... and hold loosely to whatever perspective or thought I perceive to be the "answer." Hold loosely. Struggle. And maybe... find hope.

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