After over a year, I’ve finally made it back to this platform!
I wanted to take a second before I dive into our topic for today to thank each and every one of you for continually asking me how my writing is going. Every single time someone new asked me about this blog and if I was still writing, it would give me a little life that would make me think about getting back into it again.
If I’m being honest, however, it wasn’t easy. The past year has been filled with so many ups and downs (as you all are fully aware!) that, although I have been inspired from time to time, I never found the motivation to put my thoughts on paper.
Boy, I’ve missed this. It really has been too long.
Today’s topic is a little controversial, so before you immediately write me off (no pun intended), hear me out.
Over the past year and a half, so many people have been begging for things to “get back to normal”. Where I completely understand where this mindset is coming from, it got me thinking about the events that have unfolded over the last eighteen or so months.
Just think for a second about our history regarding the Christian faith. When Adam and Eve lived in the Garden of Eden, everything was perfect. However, when they sinned for the first time, they were thrown out of the garden. What did they do after this happened? They had to find a new normal. They didn’t try to get back to what they had before because they knew it was impossible.
When Abram (later called Abraham) was called to leave his family for the Promised Land, he acted in faith and followed God. You know what he didn’t do? He didn’t try to go back to what he had before. He knew the road ahead was completely unknown, and we can imagine how scary that might have been for him! He was following God’s instructions which not many people believed were actually real. He left his entire life behind for something he wasn’t even sure was going to follow through in the end. But he didn’t go back. He trusted that God was going to provide something far better for him than what he currently had.
When the Israelites fled Pharaoh and left Egypt, they entered the wilderness thinking God was going to lead them to the Promised Land. However, here’s where things got different. They didn’t trust that God was going to provide for them, so what did they do? They wanted to go back to Egypt and “get back to normal” with what they had before. No matter the fact that they were slaves and were constantly crying out to God to save them from the horrible abuse they were enduring!
And you know what happened? They ended up wandering in the wilderness for forty years until that unbelieving generation passed away. They were so desperate to get back to what they knew before, they had lost sight of the incredible blessing God was giving them just up ahead.
Friends, we have got to stop saying that we just can’t wait to get back to normal! What if God is bringing us through this season of life to teach us something profound? What if He’s trying to get through our thick heads to show us that how we were living before was not walking in His ways, even if it appeared that way?
Right before the pandemic happened, we were obsessed with technology, social media, and our phones. Over the past eighteen months, I have never witnessed so many friends delete their profiles, swear off the internet for an entire year, and separate themselves from all the drama and harassment they experienced online.
We have learned that truly spending time with friends, in person, away from our phones and other technology, really is the way to recharge. Seeing the expressions on our faces and getting to love on one another just because we haven’t seen each other in months has meant so much more to us now than it ever did before.
Instead of just trying to get back to normal, I want God to change our hearts. I want God to show us just how much He’s led us away from the path we were going down before. I want Him to reveal to us the lessons He’s teaching us through this pandemic! Maybe it’s spending more time with family and friends; maybe it’s having different priorities; maybe it’s not putting so much emphasis on our financial status or our jobs. Whatever it is, I know for a fact that God wants to reveal something in our hearts today.
Next time someone says to you, “I can’t wait for this to all blow over” or “I can’t wait to get back to the way things were before”, maybe try challenging that mindset. Have them (and yourself!) think of ways that you have changed for the better that you couldn’t have been before!
For me, it was realizing that my job really isn’t my identity. I used to love saying I was an Electrical Engineer, and I’d boast about the wonderful things I was doing. That was, until I got laid off at 30 weeks pregnant (don’t worry, I have my job again!). This made me realize that just because I’m an engineer, doesn’t mean I’m somehow “untouchable”. Knowing that my trust has to be fully in Christ, and not just partially in Him and the rest leaning on the paycheck I bring home every two weeks, has humbled me and sobered my heart for His provision so much more than I could have experienced without a pandemic.
I’m not saying I’m thankful for what happened, not at all. What I’m saying is God is doing something in your life right now that you may or may not be able to see yet. But even still, trust in His timing. Trust that He’s going to reveal it to you. Trust that you’re not the same person you were eighteen months ago, and thank God for that.
If we aren’t growing, there’s something wrong. Thank God He’s still working in us.