What a difference a month makes … five of the flower stalks have bloomed! Sadly, I had to cut back three of those stalks on Monday morning; I walked into my study and their spent blooms were resting on the credenza. But two stalks are still going strong and the last one is about an inch high. I just might get three hope posts from these bulbs!
But in other ways, February has been a challenging month for hope. Like showing up for a graduate-level course without any of the pre-requisites. I found courage in scripture
For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. ~Jeremiah 29:11
and a possible course of action in these words from Maria Popova (which I shared back in January)
Critical thinking without hope is cynicism, but hope without critical thinking is naïveté.
I’ve been working a lot on the critical thinking. Exposing myself to new – and often – uncomfortable ideas. about myself, and others. I read. I listened. I journaled. and I spent lot of time just sitting with this discomfort.
Of course just when I thought I was getting to that “relaxed” place, Trump declared his emergency and I spiraled right back to to the beginning.
I kept reading, listening and journaling. I kept working through the Me and White Supremacy workbook. I unfollowed folks on Instagram and found new ones to follow. I unsubscribed to mailing lists and changed my shopping habits. I started listening to podcasts about news and politics. I subscribed to the New York Times.
I’m getting a little more comfortable with discomfort.
Journaling one hopeful thing each day has been a huge help, too. There were a couple of days where I just wrote “Nope!”, but mostly, it was the kind of stuff I wrote about last month – daffodils, the Social Fabric project, making space, the women’s service, a day with Charlie, sunshine … little and big things, but always things that get me back to God’s plan. for hope.
Thank you Juliann for hosting this monthly meet-up. Your space is encouraging me to be accountable and I’m grateful!