Weekend roundup: Grace, normal and our conversations

Sometimes in life, a sudden situation, a moment in time, alters your whole life, forever changes the road ahead.

Ahmad Ardalan

We live in momentous times. Days that will define you. Opportunities that you will never see again. You have the chance to do things now you have never had before.

With that, we are witnessing unique developments, experiences and phenomenons. Indeed, for most of us, it is our Pearl Harbor. Life will never be the same.

Open/not open. Mask/no mask. He said/she said.

Can you believe the discussions we have today? Is it just me, or does it seem childish or foolish? Either way, it leaves me shaking my head watching the exchanges and pontificating on news shows, Facebook and on the streets.

People will do what people will do. Even during the lockdowns that most of us are enduring, many in our ranks have not changed one thing about their lives. They continue to go through life almost as normally as they did before, completely oblivious to those around them.

The biggest — er, loudest — difference today is the number of complaints, threats and verbal browbeating that has risen to the absurd level in recent days and weeks.

Yes, the economy needs to resume at some point, and Americans need to get back to living, Most politicians are following federal protocol to start that process, but it’s not easy. Here’s a hint: Watch what they do, not necessarily what they say. Because once we begin to parse every single syllable of every word and begin to inject interpretation with intent, we start down a slippery slope.

Whether you want to re-open now or not, wear a mask/not wear a mask, don’t lower yourself to the he said/she said rhetoric that is ripping away at our fabric.

Here’s a novel idea: Apply a little grace and respect.

We live in a selfish world where it’s a challenge to operate with humility or meekness. The media, political divides and personal self-centeredness have seen to that and, frankly, that won’t change anytime soon.

Most people are concerned about themselves, their jobs, their livelihoods, their businesses, as well they should. For you, however, why not turn the focus outward. Today more than ever, people need your attention, they need to know someone cares. Give them your attention, let ’em know you do care!

We live in a selfish world where it’s a challenge to operate with humility or meekness. The media, political divides and personal self-centeredness have seen to that and, frankly, that won’t change anytime soon.

Why not try to administer a little grace to your friends, your family, your president, your governor, your congressman. Moreover, give yourself a small dose of grace and respect. Trust me, it will change your outlook on life, and it will come back to you.

Here’s a hint: Once the war or words begin to land in shock and awe like bombs from a thousand sorties, staying above the fray and keeping your powder dry is difficult. After all, you can’t fly with the eagles if you surround yourself with turkeys!

Normal? What’s normal? And do we really wanna go back there?

The talk of the town this week has been when will we get back to normal. Everyone wants to get back to work, get back to school, start watching real sports again and generally return to the hum-drumness of life as we knew it only a couple of months ago.

But do you really? Do you really want to go back there? Or would you rather like to experience something new and fresh, something quite different than the everyday routine we once lived?

Francis Chan told leaders recently in “Perspective in the Pandemic: Leader Check-In” that there is a chance we won’t go back to “church as usual, life as usual.” He continued:

God is doing something now that I’ve never seen in my lifetime … It feels like we’re headed into a new season.

Francis Chan.

Are you okay with that? Are you okay with not returning to the normal that you once knew? Have you considered that things will be different for you and your family, in just a few months? Have you begun to plan for it?

Here’s a hint: If you think you’re going to get the green light in a few weeks and just jump back into what your routine was, we probably need to get you inspected from the neck up. Ain’t happening friend.

As I wrote back on March 24, Change is ahead, embrace it!

Your life, my life, church life, work-life, play life will never be the same. Just as WWII, 9/11, the Kennedy assassination, Watergate and other mile markers ushered in significant change, so to will coronavirus.

Here’s the beautiful part. You can speak into that redevelopment of your life. You can begin to craft it anew. You’ve always wanted a do-over, well, here’s your big moment! You have the time. What are you doing with it?

Abraham Lincoln said: “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.”

You’re in the “sharpening the axe” phase. Make it count.

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