I’m sharing this just in case I am not the only one who needs to be reminded that our worth is always and only defined by our Maker, not by what we are able to do.
I’m not gonna lie…. Healthcare has never been an easy profession. Yes – it is so very rewarding…. but oh so challenging.
And, with the past couple years bringing unimaginable challenges – it’s hard not to have a bit of trepidation going into 2022 filled with thoughts like these:
Will this abominable virus surge again?
Will I lose more colleagues and friends?
How long can we sustain caring for such a large influx of patients?
Will we fight alone or will the general public support us in our battle rather than fight against us in every attempt made to help everyone survive this (masking, social distancing, vaccines, etc.)?
So…. the words spoken as we began our leadership huddle in prayer this morning lifted my heart as they helped silence the fearful voices in m my head:
“God, whatever this new year brings – You come with it.”
You may not be working in healthcare during one of the deadliest pandemics of all history, but I bet you’re going through something. And I imagine you don’t want to be blindsided by more traumatic events as we roll into a new year either….
So take solace in this, friend. Whatever you are walking into in 2022, your Maker is already there.
Knoxville has this Sunsphere from the World’s Fair one year. There’s another city or two that has a shiny sphere included in the skyline. This one is different though. It sparkles and glows in the sunlight and moonlight without the need for the electricity that flashes across the other cities’ spheres.
You see, each panel that forms the sphere is filled with 24 karat gold dust. It’s because the gold has been crushed that it reflects the light so beautifully.
So, if you’re feeling crushed by what’s going on in your world or the world at large, please hold on to the hope that the very thing that’s crushing you now will one day give you the ability to better reflect all that is beautiful and good.
What crushed you is the very thing that will help you brighten the dark places in this world.
Since there isn’t much left of May, I thought I’d post the picture of the ring I wear for Mental Health Awareness month. Mental illness is not only survivable, it can also form a strength, resilience, and empathy like little else can. However – if unspoken, unadressed, and untreated it can kill – or cause life to feel like a walking death.
After coming through a long dark season in my life that would have killed me had I not reached out for help – I had this ring designed. I borrowed the semicolon from a movement that started some years back using the punctuation mark as as a symbol for mental health awareness and suicide prevention. Just as a semicolon indicates there is more of the sentence to come, it became a declarations that “My story isn’t over!”
And – as for the Greek symbols, my Maker has many Names, but one of my favorites is “The Alpha and Omega” which describes Him as the Beginning and the End – the Eternal One.
I decided to combine the symbols into one I wear all the time to remind me of this: My story’s not over because it’s all wrapped up in His Eternal Story.
So… if you’re feeling listless and lifeless inside because of this strange season our world is in or for any other reason – please reach out and tell someone. You are not alone… but continued hiding will make you feel like you are.
Please keep the pages of your story turning because you are a very important chapter in the story of our world and the story of our God.
I learn a lot from this river. Take note of the difference between the water under the bridge compared to the rest of the river. It’s the same rainy day for all the water. But the water under the bridge is smooth and still rather than being all ruffled by the rain.
The bridge reminds me of a Shelter that provides stillness for our souls when all the world’s a storm.
“Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty. This I declare about the Lord: He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; he is my God, and I trust him.” – Psalms 91:1-2 NLT
I took this photo 8 years ago today. Much has changed since then. But what matters remains the same. Wherever I go, the Light still pursues me.
“The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it.” –John 1:5 NLT
Little else is as beautiful as the morning after a storm. Why then do we so disdain the storms in our lives? Our Maker is the Author of both the sunshine all the rain. True peace comes when we let go of the whys and let our hearts settle into the beautiful mystery of the gift of our lives.
To my fellow pilgrims on a faith journey: It is so important to remember that our righteousness (right standing with God) is not up to us – it’s up to Him. If we try to be perfect in our own efforts – it will never happen. And if you’re anything like me, you’ll just turn overwhelmed and lethargic at the impossible feat and just give up. But if we truly grasp the grace that our Maker chose to wrap us in the righteousness of His own Son, we’ll skip forward like a happy toddler with nothing to prove to a doting parent. We will want to run forward because of the knowing that even the most wavering of steps brings a smile to the face of our Father. And we are His. No matter what.
Here are a few favorite quotes from past blog posts!
Be Anxious for Nothing by Max Lucado
Oh, and this:
“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.” – The Apostle Paul, The Bible (Philippians 4:6-8 NLT)