Guys, no joke, 2020 was maaad. It ran like a crazy train till the very end, actually! All of us were really thankful to have lived to see the end and yet to have maintained our sanity. I recall feeling grateful to see the old year pass. Like you, I learned a lot in 2020 but yes, like many others, was very happy to start a new one. I gladly watched the fireworks that night and thought of what great memories I had of the past year.
It is indeed natural for people, having survived the intensity of 2020 to expect only good things of 2021. They would do so almost from a place of: “because we deserve it”. I in fact saw and laughed at so many creative memes that spoke to this very thing. One of my most favorite ones with regard to 2021 read like this: Nobody claim 2021 as “your year”, OK? We’re all going to walk in realllll slow. Be quiet. Be good. Don’t. Touch. Anything.
That meme in fact seemed to speak to folks entering the new year tentatively, as though tip-toeing into it. And who would blame them? Thing is, the new year has begun and things already do not seem stable, nor do they appear stabilizing. It feels as if those of us still standing have our feet placed on a moving surface below. It is as though the very ground we’re standing on remains unsteady. Between my hubby and I, we’ve already known 4 or 5 people relatively close to us who have died. And we’re not even through January! We’re barely mid-month. These are times that try the soul. These are times that are causing people the world over to ask: what is happening?
It’s OK to ask such questions. It’s OK to grieve the moment. It’s OK to contemplate the past. I’d wager that it is OK to do one more thing: to have hope for the rest of this year. Why? Well, hope is usually based on a source. On an anchor. If a ship had an anchor that was strong and went down deep, hooked onto a rock, no matter the intensity of the wind and storms above, the captain and those within would remain chill. Relaxed. Same with a tree that had deep, deep roots. It would be incredibly hard to completely destabilize said tree by uprooting it. The question(s) everyone needs to ask themselves now, as it is key to our survival this year (and likely the rest of this decade) is: how rooted am I? What am I anchored on?
If we’re anchored on economic theories and predictions, those too will fail. If we’re anchored on certain public figures, we’re in for great heartache. If we’re trusting in fellow human beings, well, all of us know by now that people are fickle. Their opinions change in a matter of moments. So, no. Not trustworthy. Hmm. What’s left? At some point in the midst of a rapidly changing world, I think that everyone will go back to asking some existential questions. Those who were atheist or agnostic might start thinking back to certain songs they recall from their childhoods in Sunday School. We are all ripe for a rethinking of the place of the one true God in our lives. Is He the only hope for humanity’s survival? Are we more likely to wipe each other off the face of the planet with our division and confusion without His intervention? For me, the answer to both these questions is, “yes”. Thankfully, He’s not an aloof God, satisfied with just watching us kill ourselves. He’s always working, working, working, trying to mold human hearts, to get us to rethink our actions and their consequences, to get us to rethink our view of Him (He’s not a tyrant or mean), and to get us to rethink our understanding of His role in the here and now.
Is it perhaps time for you and I to face those questions we’ve avoided up till now? Don’t know about you, but because I am convinced of the sheer goodness (and kindness!) of God, I have great peace. No matter what 2021 holds, I have great hope for it because of He who is with me. I hope you can say the same thing for yourself. These are trying times.
Stay strong. Get anchored. Stay hopeful.
Happy New year. 😊