Unplugging in Chaos
Almost everything in the media revolves around the chaos that is never-passing in our world. It’s during this season of life, that I find myself needing to unplug more habitually.
The constant bombardment of all that is wrong in our world causes a disruption to the peace in my heart. It creates a division in my relationships, my emotions, and how I spend my time. And I’ve realized something important. . .
I don’t need to watch the news every day.
I don’t need to log in and scroll through social media to see the hundreds of comments on a particular issue.
I don’t need to see the re-runs of what’s been happening on television.
And I don’t need to listen to the radio commentary about how a certain political figure has the answer.
Because I’ve been there, I’ve done that, and it only elicits anger and escalates my fears.
I’ve been the person that responds rashly to an online comment, has the quick quip that only seems to escalate anger in a conversation. I’ve also been the person that’s been prideful with a hard-headed response or outlook (because I know the answer). Ouch! Yuck!
But, after these impasses, I’m always left feeling empty, depleted, miserable, and even angrier. (Who would have thought, right?)
Thank you Jesus for forgiveness that can’t be earned
I’ve also been the person that can’t sleep from fear. I’ve gotten the lump in my throat and in my chest from the pain of a day. I’ve fought back tears on a drive and broke down because of panic.
It’s not that I want to ignore the chaos around me, and pretend that nothing is happening, or believe that I can’t do anything, or that God isn’t there. I’ve just realized that there is a time and a place to soak in the information, to grieve, to process, to pray, to love, and to take action.
Dwelling on injustices, and being in constant fear, only makes me immobile, angry, and bitter. Whereas, God wants me to be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord (1 Cor. 15:58). He has equipped me with everything good to do His will, according to the power of Jesus Christ (Heb. 13:21).
If I don’t stop, if I don’t listen, if I don’t let His Word soak into my heart, then I can’t be Jesus’ hands and feet, and I can’t let the Holy Spirit do a great work through me for God’s glory.
I also miss the opportunities to find joy in the simple things that He has placed directly in my life. Because of fear or anger in my heart, I would often let this carry over into my work, my relationships, and how I spent my time (or rather wasting it).
Because of this God-given push to unplug more often, I find myself taking the time to appreciate the little things that God has placed in my life- hugging my son, watching him laugh and laughing with him, being goofy with my husband, going on a date night, having a beach day with a friend, calling my mom, going to the park, reading a book, enjoying a home cooked meal, taking someone a home cooked meal, and being happy with this life.
I’m reminded that God is there. His beauty, His goodness, His gifts, and He, Himself is there.
Because it’s so hard to see Him when all I see is chaos, because I choose to only see chaos, instead of choosing to look for the good, see the good, or be the good in this world.
It’s amazing to realize that by unplugging, living life to the fullest each day, appreciating the relationships I have, investing in others, loving the simplicity, and being thankful, actually give me a better perspective than the knowledge that is often spewed out of my television or computer.
It not only allows me time to pray, but it allows me time to praise and be thankful in my heart.
The gifts of a greater peace, a greater love, and a stronger heart for God and for others begin to replace the fear and the anger that I once chose to have.
And I’m reminded to always have faith.
“Know this my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger, for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.” -James 1:19-20
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give it to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” -John 14:27
What About You?
Do you take the time to unplug? When and why do you decide to do so, and how has it benefited you?