2020: best year ever?

photo-1512099053734-e6767b535838We’ve hit a monumental moment in the year 2020. We are officially halfway through the year. 2020; the year where everything blew up. We’ve heard a lot of different opinions on this, haven’t we? The memes of 2020 simultaneously make me want to laugh and cry.

A global pandemic, injustice, national riots, murder hornets!? Is this real life? We could all lean into the cyclical rhetoric of “It just isn’t my year… again.”

I’m not here to try to create anything that hasn’t been said before. I’m here to pose a question of perspective. The truth is this: we haven’t run out of time. Hope is not lost, despite what everything on your phone tells you. 20/20 is the term used for perfect vision. What if 2020 isn’t the worst year of all time? What if we allowed 2020 to be the year we saw clearly? To see clearly what matters. To see clearly where you have been silent. To have vision for what you may need to say yes or no to. Yes, change is happening on a national level. Yes, you can absolutely affect change, and your voice matters. But the truth is that unless you allow Jesus to do the hard, heart-changing work on the inside of you, you will remain the same.

If counseling has taught me anything, it’s this: maybe it’s not all bad. Maybe just because things are hard doesn’t mean that they’re wrong. Maybe we live in a world that is broken, and just like Jesus said, we would experience and watch brokenness. Jesus gave us a million examples of what it looks like for things to get worse before they get better.

In order to grow something new, you must dig up the old. It’s gotta get a little messy. Dirty. There is hard work involved. What if, through the dirt and through the mess, we allowed this year not simply to make us better; but to make our vision clear?

The question always remains: “So where does this leave me?

Thankfully, God’s word has a beautiful answer for us when it all feels too big.

In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will.” [Romans 8:26-27]

This truth addresses our lack of knowledge and wisdom for what is right. It speaks to our heartbreak and our questions. God’s will often feels like one massive, mysterious and unsearchable answer that we’ll never know. But this verse makes it clear: His Spirit, who lives in you, prays for you with all of the knowledge of the will of God. 

It’s all closer than you think. Clarity, guidance, wisdom. I believe that our hearts have lied to us and molded us to believe that somewhere along the line, our God plays games with our lives. The doubt in us believes that, sure, He has good things for us; but He is present in our lives with one hand behind His back. It just isn’t true. Scroll back up two paragraphs and read the truth over again. The truth is that God “...anointed us, set His seal of ownership on us, and put His Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.” [2 Corinthians 2:22]

God didn’t have to do this, you know. It is only for our benefit that the Almighty God sealed His Spirit in each one of us; to guide us, and pray for us in a way that lines up with God’s will for our lives.

If you have felt discouraged over these past few months, take some time now to sit. The living, breathing Spirit of God has been sealed within you as a promise. He knows you, and He knows God. There is no need to fear what is coming or live in shame about what was. He has searched you, He knows you, and you have complete access to all that He is. This is how we change the world.

Pray. Use your voice. Act. But in the end, none of it was meant to be carried by you. The pain, the injustice, the heartbreak of the world was never meant to be carried by you. Your role is to pick up the broken pieces, turn around, and hand them to the Healer.

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