Informed But Not Immersed
Hello and welcome back to the blog!
As I am writing to you, I have this ambiance video playing in the background, my husband has made us a fire, and although it's the middle of the afternoon, dusky darkness has filled the sky. The first crockpot chili of the season is slowly warming in the kitchen, and all that's left is for me to light some cinnamon candles.
It finally feels like Fall. From the sudden uselessness of our window air conditioner to the dark mornings we've been having, there is a noticeable season shift in the air, and I could not be happier.
I think so many of us feel ready for this new season simply because it represents a forward shift towards the future. I think most of us are longing to distance ourselves from the chaos we have experienced since the Spring, and a deep urge to feel secure, cozy, and far away from disorder has crept into our hearts.
While I am NOT an advocate for escapism, I do believe that some level of escape is warranted right now. I think it's okay for us to want to flee from the pain and chaos in this world, searching for security and experiences outside of this disarray. I know that I have been intentionally turning down the volume on the news, turning away from the chaos, and seeking more in-person peace.
I've been soaking in warm showers by candlelight, long stretches of time cuddled in bed with my husband, and afternoon snuggles with my dog. I've been trying new recipes, organizing every corner of this house, and focusing on creating a peaceful ambiance here in our little sanctuary, for my health, but also for our baby's health.
This shift I've been making has caused me to reflect upon boundaries. This topic always gets brought up concerning relationships, but I believe we need to discuss boundaries with the news as well.
Because even if you could say that I've been "escaping into my own reality: and away from the news and the world, I have to argue and say that what I'm doing does not feel like escaping: it feels like I am creating a home defense strategy.
Escapism is an issue if we are avoiding our personal problems, our responsibilities, or putting off our needs.
But I'm not escaping my problems: I'm escaping the WORLD'S problems.
And honestly, I think that's okay.
I think it's good to be aware of the problems in the world and to have an opinion on them, but I think we should balance that knowledge with a structured personal defense strategy.
I think it's healthy for us as young women to preserve our energy for our real lives.
It's easy to feel afraid or caught up in the cultural narrative, allowing the news or social media to drag us into debates, fights, or even anxiety that we never wanted. But we must recognize that being so immersed in the news or politics or simply the world can cause us to unknowingly allow destruction and anxiety to infiltrate our hearts and minds.
Choosing to separate ourselves from the darkness, refusing to join useless fights, and protecting our hearts from the immense pain in this world is an essential and effective way we can protect ourselves from unneeded stress and chaos.
I'm not encouraging you to not be aware of what is going on: I think it's foolish when people completely put their heads in the sand. We SHOULD know the general picture of what's going on! This knowledge helps us to know who we want to vote for, how we can protect ourselves, and how we should move forward with decisions around finances, education, careers, or even our health. In short, we should be informed.
But being informed is much different from being completely immersed in the world.
I ensure that I am informed enough to know what to pray for the world, how to vote, and how to respond to the ever-increasing darkness. But I also separate my personal world enough so that I am not emotionally brought down by the stress of this desperate culture. I choose instead to immerse myself in the word of God: in HIS truth. There is no other reality that will ever be as important as His truth.
I think often of the story fo the Zealots in Jesus' day. They were a group of Jews who were extremely pious to their religion but even more so focused on politics. They were overcome with their hatred of Rome and the Greeks and wanted nothing more than for the Jews to be physically freed from Roman rule. They were swallowed up in their current reality to such a degree that they failed to see the Heavenly reality before them in the person of Jesus Christ. The spiritual deliverance that Jesus' death offered them was not good enough: they wanted physical deliverance from the oppression they faced.
I learned this story as a young girl and have never forgotten it. It always reminds me to not get so wrapped up in the present circumstances that I miss out on the Spiritual deliverance of repentance and the Living Water that is Jesus Christ. The only reality we need to remember is that there is nothing new under the sun. God is in control and He is a good God. We are not promised eternal joy, peace, or blessing here on this earth, but we are promised His guidance, love, and protection. We can rest easy in the Scripture, knowing that God is Sovereign.
So although our present circumstances may seem absolutely bonkers, I hope that we can separate our hearts from the stress and focus instead on the Word of God.
And if we want to amplify that separation even more, I highly encourage us all to focus on tidying up our homes, working on our health and beauty, celebrating our relationships, and welcoming in the Autumn season.
Because no matter what is going on out there, we have complete control over how we react to this stress and how we choose to orchestrate our days. We can choose contentment, patience, and peace, or we can choose to be upset, harried, and strung out. We can choose to put our hope in our heavenly Father, or we can choose to allow this present darkness to unhinge us.
I hope you choose along with me to stay informed and be involved to a certain degree, while also refusing to become completely immersed in this darkness.
I hope you welcome in Fall with me, baking those pastries, grabbing a masked-up coffee with a friend, and tugging on your rain boots for a jaunt through a field. I hope you put some cinnamon scented pine cones in a bowl on your coffee table, set up some soft jazz through your speaker, and do a cozy movie marathon.
I believe that we can use these blessings in life, the pastries and the tidying and our quiet evenings at home, as tools to further our mental and emotional peace. Please remember to revel in the blessings of God more than you fixate on the darkness and evil of this world. God has us tight in his palm, and we are going to be okay.
Happy Autumn days my loves, and remember to stay separate while remaining informed.