In case you had not noticed, I have a mind that collects thoughts faster than our furniture collects microbes of dust.
Stand in a room of your house when the sun is streaming in and look at all those bits of matter swirling around and you might just get a glimpse of my daily existence inside the gray matter tucked under this head of mine.
So I jot notes in journals and spiral notebooks, on the backs of receipts and bank statements, napkins, my hand if I have nothing of paper to use. With the coming of smart phones, I have been able to even email an idea to myself but I have also been known to use the voice record feature.
I saved my old blackberry just so I could have a record of thoughts from that season, and yes last time I checked I could still pull them up. God bless the Blackberry which far surpassed Apple and all their updates and backups and such that need a tech degree to even operate at times.
Currently on my phone I have 31 recordings of undeveloped ideas and so this morning as I was walking I decided to listen to a couple.
One of them was recorded in January of this year. I was reflecting on a picture I had seen with a news article quite a while after the 2011 earthquake and tsunami that devastated parts of Japan. It showed tables with boxes of photographs and people looking through them trying to find any that belonged to them.
As someone who struggles to delete any of the 11,000 plus photos on her phone..yes…11,000…that are also stored on two computers and two external hard drives, I still get a lump in my throat imagining these broken hearts looking for any tangible keepsake of life before it was ripped away.
When I googled today to try and find that picture, I see that eleven years later they are still struggling to rebuild and regroup. 20,000 died right away…500,000 were forced to evacuate. The damage was so incredibly shocking.
And we all were upset and prayed and had compassion…for about a week or so. Until the next thing came and took our attention.
My thoughts I recorded in January were we now understand, worldwide, all at once…what it is like to have life completely turned upside down.
While the pandemic is discussed from many angles and theories and critical analysis, we cannot deny that all of life on planet earth was touched by this.
The toll it took on some was life itself, on others mental or physical or economic health. The decisions made by leaders in the midst of it and in the aftermath continue to keep us in a state of unrest and imbalance.
While we can say, in some ways, it is good to be back to “normal,” we are far from “normal” around the world and in our own communities.
We are forever changed and often we gather, with friends, digging through the aftermath trying to find whatever it was we lost.
I watch with amazement as we are asked to put masks on our children to go in enclosed buildings at a small local zoo yet stadiums are packed with unmasked adults and children yelling and screaming.
I listen with interest to a fellow shopper who is wearing a mask as she tells me she is vaccinated, but her brother is a research doctor and has reminded her that with the vaccine, we who contract Covid will be able to fight it off, but we also help it to mutate. She asks me where do I thing the variants come from.
I hear the news that threatens we may all be going back to wearing masks, and I remember the feeling of having to put that thing on to go to work or to get groceries. I remember the sad eyes of others looking over the top of their mask back at me or the panic in the eyes of others.
We are not unchanged by all that has happened, but the wonder is that we have done this across the board.
We may not agree at all with others about anything that has happened, but we have all been affected and we have all lost something.
I know for me, this healing and processing needs to take place outside of the political and media spotlight. This past year and a half has challenged some things that I realize I had just accepted or taken for granted.
As I pray and seek God for answers to my own questions of personal and global loss, I am learning more about who He is and who we are. I am drawing closer to Him through His word and I hope and pray you are as well.
Perhaps digging through the ancient promises that still hold true is a much better place to gather than old boxes of photographs.
I just know that as I think on different parts of the world where devastation hit a community hard and we all felt bad but our lives went on..now we all know what it feels like to lose everything we called normal together all at once.
We are living in a most significant time…let’s seek to live it well for such a time as this <3