A little Life Renewal
Picture a current: A stream, a rushing river, water running down the storm drain after a rain. Have you ever felt the pull of a current? No matter how strong or how large the body of water, a current has force and momentum that pushes and pulls.
Now picture the current of the world around you: your family, your friends, a religious community, your workplace, your social media, the parents of other kids at school, your neighborhood. Have you ever felt the pull of that current? Oftentimes, it feels something like this: "Do more. Accomplish more. Sign up for one more activity. Go to that tenth birthday party in one weekend. Make more money. Look better. Have more fun. Work harder. Be busier. Be more relaxed. Be like everyone else, but be yourself."
No wonder we feel so hurried and anxious and dissatisfied and depleted most of our days. And the more we are guided by this current, the greater the (usually negative) impact on our relationships, our families and others around us.
So first the bad news: this current isn't changing anytime soon. When my husband went to summer camp as a kid, his camp counselors made up a game for all of the squirrely middle school boys: if you can dam up the creek, you get pizza for dinner instead of whatever food the counselors were cooking. These kids worked their hardest for an hour, but they never got pizza. We can't dam up the current of culture around us.
But now the good news: we can make a bridge across. We can anchor some pillars in place in our lives that keep us connected to what is most important to us regardless of the current swirling around our feet. For us as individuals, I have a few suggestions:
Values. What are the core principles, beliefs or values that guide your life? If your life had a mission statement, what would that be? Without a vision in mind, we become aimless and waste the precious life we've been given.
Self-Care. What are the things in life that get you up early in the morning and keep you up late? Do you give yourself time to do what you enjoy, not what you think you should be doing?
Soul Friendships. Who are the people that know the very best and worst of you? The people who you can count on and lean on, and know that they will journey with you in the highs and lows of life? We aren't meant to do this life alone.
I encourage you to take some time and reflect on these three areas of your life. Maybe you can think of one or two other areas that feel like strong pillars in the midst of rushing water. This is vital; definitely not easy, but vital.
Stay rooted and grounded,