“We cannot choose our external circumstances, but we can always choose how we respond to them.”
"Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds”
These past days have been frustrating, disappointing, and not exactly how I wanted them to go. During this pandemic, I have been working from home, and while I do love getting to see my children and wife more, it is tricky to remain on task. It’s also tricky to stop working when my office is in the basement, the bedroom, my son's bedroom, our living room, etc. My screen time has gone through the roof on my devices, and I’ve become more irritable and anxious.
I know that I'm not alone in some of these feelings, but that doesn’t stop them from being valid feelings. I also know that I should be grateful that I have a job that can be done digitally in this season and isn’t hourly where I am put out of work because my employer shuts down. I should also be grateful that my family is still healthy and that we have a home to stay cooped up in. Somehow though, the things I ‘should’ be grateful don’t necessarily make me more joyful. Even when I reflect on those things I'm still irritable, I’m still anxious, I’m still annoyed with the situation and circumstances.
But when I reflect on Jesus and truly ask Him what I can control, I begin to realize how selfish I am. I begin to realize that the world is so much bigger than me. I begin to ponder the letters of Paul and how he wrote them from prison. I begin to think of Jesus on the cross shedding blood for all. I begin to be reminded that I can take my thoughts captive and that I can choose how I respond. I don’t do this to ignore my feelings, but to help shape them. This morning wasn’t exactly better, but as the day goes on it is getting better and I’m allowing myself to call out the feelings I’ve felt. I’m allowing myself to shape my response into who I want to be not just who I’ve been and my gut reactions.
I say all this to say, I see you and I know it is hard. You can control your response to the situations, even if you can’t change the situations, and there is a way to find joy and peace amidst chaos. If there is a way I can be praying for you or an encouragement to you, please reach out. It helps me too when I get to connect. Love you, friends!