I don’t know about you, but I’ve been feeling more than a little overwhelmed by the news these past months. I used to pride myself on my fluency with current events and listened to an almost non-stop streaming of public radio, checked my Facebook feed for articles and postings that can kept pushing my edges of awareness in the world.
But lately I’ve just been listening to Benjamin’s audiobooks of the entire Harry Potter series. Over and over again. I know what I’m running from, and I’m having a hard time even looking over my shoulder to see if I’ve put any real distance between myself and whatever the latest horrible reality there is to face.
I’m not proud of this, but it does feel like the first step to turning around is to stop and acknowledge the denial.
And then…what? How do we find the balance between trying to do every act of justice and doing nothing at all?
The heart of the Gospel is to love God, neighbor and self with all my heart, mind, soul and strength. And part of the good news is that there’s no test of faith that says I have to find the perfect way to do this all at once and in every way. Really, just finding one way to love God today is a perfectly good start. Taking one hour to engage my mind in curiosity and wonder can do much to encourage the growth of my mind and spirit. Making a meal for a neighbor or church member doesn’t really take any more time than making one for my own family…that’s a two-for-one effort! The beauty of doing just one of these things is how they influence my heart towards greater generosity, compassion, and curiosity.
Sometimes engaging in the incarnational work of faith is the simplest way back to finding myself in the palm of God’s hand; to tuning in to the voice of God, not just tuning out the clamor of the daily newsfeed.