If everything was easy …
if our days worked according to plans …
and our plans were always perfect …
wouldn’t life be boring?
With no element of surprise,
no assurance of great happiness or accomplishment,
no possibility of failure, injury or tragedy,
no wonder of “what’s around the bend,”
where would we marvel?
What reason would we have for celebration?
For after great accomplishment and many outstanding victories
without struggle or failure
even triumph would soon become monotonous.
None of us is required to remember to breathe.
Our bodies are wired to breathe automatically.
One of the functions of your brain stem
is to keep your body breathing.
Our lives are not filled with struggle
associated with finding a way to remember to breathe.
And so, we don’t find our days filled with celebration
that we remembered to breathe all.day.long!
I’m thankful that my entire life doesn’t operate like
the breathing of my lungs, beating of my heart or
movement of blood through my body.
I am thankful that my life doesn’t run on “auto-pilot.”
My life – and yours – is filled with
strife, struggle and frustration,
decisions, choices and options,
joy, victory and celebration.
This photo was taken last Christmas. Seldom are photos taken when sadness, frustration or chaos are being experienced. But, here is Glory …. frustrated. As I remember, it was a typical evening when the whole family is together. James was being somehow irritatingly comical (of course, he was the intrusive one to take the photo), Joy was being loud and Glory was overwhelmed.
Between the chirping of the birds (the birds … that chirp louder and LOUDER as the noise level in the house rises), Christmas music filling the room with festivity, the distribution of multiple Christmas presents, the sweet dog underfoot, circling and fearful from the camera being out (she had a lightning/camera flash association that caused her to be troubled by the camera. I’m pretty sure she thought that the “lightning” from the camera would be accompanied by a storm … but who knows for sure!) …
But, I’ve learned that
we can let this overwhelm us
and try to contain and control all the “mess,”
or we can make the decision to roll with it
and just enjoy life … no matter what it looks like.
And so, I’m thankful, yes, even for chaos.
If I can’t put a stop to it, I’m going to find a way to find the fun in it.
I’m not going to let it ruin the moment … wreck the day …. spoil the week.
In the harsh reality of the world, there is little that we can truly control.
We can look for a job, but that doesn’t mean we can find one.
We can work to save our marriages/friendships/relationships,
but we can only do OUR part … so ultimately, the “saving” is a two sided effort.
We can try to keep our homes clean/straight/repaired,
but there is always someone who is going to dirty/messy/break something.
It’s all part of life … chaos.
Rather than being frustrated by its presence,
rather than trying to control and overtake it with sheer power,
why not accept it as part of life
and overcome it with a healthy attitude?
And why not use it to propel us towards God.
Nothing happens in my life that hasn’t first filtered through His hands.
Why not hand it all to Him …. rather than me fretting about
things I cannot control,
I can just take a deep breath and enjoy the moment … whatever it looks like.
Chaos makes balance appreciated.
Chaos makes peace all the more welcome.
Chaos stirs our emotions
so that we can more fully esteem, enjoy and celebrate
when life is settled, comfortable and serene.
As unnatural as it sounds, I am thankful for chaos.