Well, we’re officially into the new year and I think we can all see there was no magic reset button to bring all things back to normal.
But here’s what I’ve learned in the last six years beloved. NORMAL is overrated.
Six years ago today, we stumbled out onto Michigan Avenue after doctors told us there was nothing more they could do to stop the brain cancer my husband had been fighting for the last 14 months. As I pushed his wheelchair down the sidewalk alongside my son, the biggest flakes of snow floated down from Heaven. My heart felt like it was bleeding and would never recover but somehow in the middle of those feelings I also felt God’s great love reaching into the depths of my being reassuring me He had not left.
6 weeks later Alan left this earth for his eternal home and one week after that I got my first… “what’s your new normal comment?”
I could not beloved. Are you seriously asking me with a smile on your face when I’m returning to work? My world has collapsed, some days I don’t even know if my body will remember how to breathe. And what about helping my four kids navigate their own grief?
The sweetest truth that I’ve discovered is that what ruined me for normal life, set me up for eternity. Not, in the sweet by and by way. But in the “Heaven came down” kind of way.
What I mean by that is, Jesus has become so very real. He’s held me by his right hand so that I won’t be shaken. He made darkness into light for me and stood by his Word that says Joy comes in the morning.
This is how we grieve with hope beloved. We don’t deny the pain, disappointment or heartache. And, after a year like we’ve all had there is plenty of that to go around.
But, we do acknowledge that those things don’t determine our destiny and they don’t have to determine how we live today.
We must shift our perspective from an earthly one to a Heavenly one.
When we begin to see Heaven as our true home. The things of the earth don’t have such a tight hold on us anymore.
This doesn’t take away the grief and suffering but it anchors our hearts in Heaven. When our hearts are anchored in Heaven we are empowered to live supernaturally right here. We trust that God is working all things for our good. We believe that He still has good plans for us no matter what we see in front of us.
They are His good plans dear ones, not ours. So, they may look different than we hope but He will bring good. Because He is Good.
So how do we start shifting our perspective so our hearts remember we’re residents of Heaven? I often like to say it begins by “lifting up your eyes,” but here’s a good example of that.
Psalm 16: 8 says it this way…
“I have set the Lord continually before me, because he is at my right hand I will not be shaken, Therefore, my heart is glad.”
Gladness of heart comes when our eyes are fixed on him and our firm foundation rests on Him.
A shaking may take place beloved but with our eyes fixed on him the only things that will be removed in the shaking are the things that don’t belong in our hearts. We are being conformed more into the image of Christ and anything that doesn’t resemble Him, we don’t want there.
Let’s do it friend. Let’s exhale all the expectations we pinned on last year or this one. Let’s set the Lord before our eyes, filling our hearts with His word and resting on those promises.
Normal is overrated. Don’t you think?