When the ordinary isn’t ordinary anymore and life comes crashing in on you, what do you do? If you are like me, you want to run away or you want to hide somewhere until the storm blows over. But you know you can’t run away. Where would you go? You know you can’t hide from life no matter how much you want to.
After thinking about this, I realized there are plenty of places I can run away to or hide in to escape the struggles and difficulties that are part of life’s journey at times. I can hide myself in busyness and meaningless distractions. I can hide myself in TV shows, surfing the web, perusing Amazon. Or how about Facebook or Words with Friends? Those are great places for me to hide. Did I mention shopping?
I could also run away to self-pity. Why me, Lord? Why now? I could run away into wine, chocolates or ice cream. Or anger – that would make me really feel better to lash out at someone, anyone!
Ultimately, I know I cannot run away, no matter how much I may want to. I cannot hide from the new journey thrust upon me, no matter how hard I may try. When the winds of change blow upon us, bringing sickness, sorrow, pain, loss or any other unwelcome circumstances, we can only stay, accept and be with what is, allowing God’s grace to lead us on paths not traveled, to places yet unknown.
As the psalmist says: Where can I go from your spirit, from your presence where can I flee? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I sink to the nether world, you are present there. If I take the wings of the dawn, if I settle at the farthest limits of the sea even there your hand shall guide me, and your right hand hold me fast.” (Psalm 139:7-10)
May we be given the grace to stay when the ordinary isn’t ordinary anymore.
– Sallie Bachar