No one envisioned the year 2020 this way. In all our plans and dreams for the new year, a pandemic was the last thing we expected. But the beautiful thing about our relationship with Jesus is that He makes beauty from ashes. In places where hope may have been lost, life thrives and explodes with joy and grace.
Even in the chaos, we can still find peace.
Not in a world fading away, but in Christ alone.
I really wish I could send everyone reading this post a warm hug. But because I can’t, I hope this blog post serves as a love letter filled with hope and encouragement to last through this season.
I once read a caption that said,
Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass, but learning how to dance in the rain.
Although a part of me wants this season to be over as soon as possible so everything can be restored back to normal, it would be wise to prepare our hearts this season to dance in the rain.
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”John 16:33
As believers living in a degenerating world, we are assured of a greater person living inside of us. There are many things happening around us, but we must ensure these things don’t slip in and contaminate our thoughts. Bad things are bound to happen in an unstable world, but our reliance is on Christ the Chief cornerstone. If our hope was in this world, then we would be pitiable.
If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied.1Corinthians 15:19
So while we fix our gaze on our Purpose, the following things can help us stay sane and maximize the opportunities presented to us in this season.
Focus on your Growth
Strength is built in adversity. Spiritual growth is triggered in the midst of chaos. Are you aware that the best wine is produced in the harshest environment? Without adversity, strength can’t be built.
Spiritual muscles come through experiences like this. So maximize this season and use it to build your inner man well. Because many other seasons will come to threaten your peace, but because of this season, you’ll be strong enough to overcome.
If you faint in the day of adversity, Your strength is small.Proverbs 24:10
Spend time reading the word of God and listen in for His voice. Binge on those Christ centric messages in your library. Listen to edifying music.
Some of my personal recommendations include songs by Lanre Awosika and Steffany Gretzinger’s New album-Forever Amen. You can find them on Youtube.
God is speaking and he tends to speak more in seasons like this when the distractions are many.
Do you remember when Jesus was born? Many were so distracted they weren’t aware of the Saviour’s birth. Had they known, they would have given Mary the best room to birth Jesus.
This is the best time to set routines and systems that will help you prioritize Jesus.
Eliminate everything that threatens your peace
If you’re living on Earth, then you’re aware of the incessant updates about the pandemic. This can cause agitation and unnecessary anxiety can sneak in. Satan and his cohorts thrive in such atmosphere and you don’t need that in your life right now.
So you can either delete your News App or ignore any updates that keeps coming up in your face about the season. You can also mute statuses that make you uncomfortable and increase your anxiety.
You don’t know the future, but you trust the God who does. And taking life one step at a time is perfectly fine.
I know it feels daunting. There are days when thoughts barge in, tugging at me to wonder,
‘Will this end? When will it end?” What if it goes on and on? What’s going to happen? Unemployment is increasing, the stock market keeps plummeting, what will happen to me if things go awry?”
But I have an answer. Jesus. And He’s enough. This melts every thought that isn’t from and of Christ.
Remember you don’t have to do everything
At a time like this, many sites are offering free courses or giving discounted offers. I’ve seen posts advocating people to take up new skills and do everything doable this season.
But I’m here to tell you it’s okay to be still and remember God is God. He will lead you and guide you accordingly like He’s always done.
It’s okay to prioritize your soul health before everything else.
I was tempted to register for some courses until the HolySpirit called my attention back. Some of these things may be good, but is it God?
Just because it’s free doesn’t mean it’s for you. This isn’t the time to engage in every activity you see online. It’s so easy to get distracted in this season. We must not be swayed.
Learn to take life one pace at a time. Like a friend once said, ‘You still have the same 24 hours.’ Don’t be lured into believing you have more just because you work from home now.
We are going to give account to God on how we spent our time and we wouldn’t want to spend productive hours on tiktok, twitter, facebook or Instagram. These sites aren’t bad, but everything should be done in moderation.
If it isn’t spirit-regulated, you can easily get caught up in all the frenzy.
Personally, I love to take some days off social media to focus on God and myself. I’d advise you to take healthy precautions to keep your mind and soul sane.
I have a life and 90% of that life isn’t lived online.
Get essential oils to ease your nerves
In a season like this, it’s easy to have your sleep pattern disturbed.
Essential oils to the rescue! For someone who worked as an essential oil enthusiast in the past, I’d recommend putting some drops of Lavendar oil on your pillow to sleep well and wake up refreshed. Natural smells have a way of easing your nerves and make you feel relaxed.
You can buy an oil diffuser for your home or your workspace to keep you effective. I recently got one myself and my room smells like an aromatic garden!
I love it!
Orange essential oil has a citrusy smell that can spike up your senses and keep you going during your work hours. It has been shown to lift moods and relieve stress.
Lemongrass oil is good for repelling mosquitoes.
Have fun trying new things
Reading is way better than watching movies, so don’t be tempted to binge on Netflix or that over-hyped TV series.
I’ve read four books this year and I’m still way behind my reading goals for the year. School work and my writing got in the way a few times, but I hope to increase my reading pace. I’ve found myself reading more Young Adult novels these days as some of them are clean and worth my time.
Although I’m not really a fan of Non-fiction except a select few, I’m hoping to explore new genres outside my scope like Writing books, middle-grade books, Sci-fi, Fantasy and YA drama.
I’m currently reading, ‘Reading like a Writer by Francine Prose.
A Bibliophile can never be bored.
I understand not everyone enjoys reading, but you can cultivate a new habit. Learn a new language or do something outside your comfort zone. In the past I limited myself as a Writer but being just a Writer can have its bad and unstable days.
So it would be safer and better to explore new territories through God’s leading.
My passion for baking and trying different recipes was reignited recently. My friend calls me a digital chef because if I see a recipe I like on Youtube and it’s doable with affordable ingredients, I go for it. I’d whip it up and if I end up liking it, I’d make it again. Even if you fail, don’t be afraid to try again. There’s no hard and fast rule about these things. Don’t be afraid to explore and try new things.
I hope this post encourages you to live and do life the way your maker designed you to. I hope it takes your mind away from the fear outside so you can live with hope from within.
Don’t forget to pray always, eat healthy, wash your hands, rest, listen to your thoughts, journal your heart out, drink lots of water, smash your workout goals and ultimately, seek God first.
Don’t let the world steal your wonder. There’s still so much life and love you’ve got to give. So take courage and believe again.
A New day is coming.
Bloom with Love. Xx!