The Love Bungalow is supposed to be lighthearted. It’s supposed to celebrate life by highlighting good things like cooking, marriage, and creativity and providing a respite from all the craziness the world throws at us.
But, sometimes, the craziness comes in anyway.
And lately, I haven’t been feeling like celebrating or trying new recipes or hosting parties.
I’ve been sad.
Sad because of injustice. Sad because of violence. Sad because of political upheaval. Sad because my friends and I are finding each other on opposite sides of arguments. Sad because people I know are hurting other people. Sad because I realize how many people I disagree with. Sad because I don’t know how to make things better. Sad because I don’t see things getting any better. Sad because I see lines being drawn in the sand and I’m giving up the desire to cross them. Sad because I don’t have the answers. Sad because I wonder if I am part of the problem.
We sang so many songs in church today about God being good. But I don’t think he seems very good to the families of Alton Sterling, Philando Castile, Lorne Ahrens, Michael Krol, Michael Smith, Brent Thompson, Patrick Zamarripa, Montrell Jackson, Matthew Gerald, Brad Garafola, and so many others right now. I can only imagine what my response would be if I was personally affected by one of these tragedies, but I assume I would have some pretty strong words and doubts for God if I even wanted to speak with him at all.
I’ve been feeling powerless. Like nothing I can do will make a difference. Yes, I can write letters and volunteer, but at the end of the day, I’m still a privileged white person with so little knowledge about the thousands of injustices that occur across the world every single day. I tell myself that my years studying and practicing mental health will someday make a difference, but that doesn’t seem true as I just sit on my couch and study while people are being shot.
I know I’m not alone in my sadness and I’m hopeful that our grief and mourning will bring us together, as friends, as bloggers, as Hoosiers, and as humanity. I want to respond. I want to take a stand. I want the violence to end. But I don’t know how to do that yet. So, while I’m praying for wisdom for my role in God’s plan of bringing about peace and restoration to the world, this is what I’m doing now:
- I pray alot. Even if my prayers don’t make sense. Even if my prayers are just questions. Even if my prayers are just tears.
- I acknowledge my feelings. It’s OK to be sad.
- I check myself. Am I speaking truth or just my perspective? Will these words bring hope or hate? Will I be inclusive or divisive?
- I practice small acts of peace. I go to yoga. I tell Husband that I love him. I buy Starbucks for the person behind me in line.
- I choose hope. I believe humanity can do better. I believe I have a role to play in making that happen. I believe the transformational power of love can heal and bring about incredible change.
I would love to know what you’re doing during these difficult times. Maybe we can do something together. Peace to you and all who are suffering.