Day 20 of the war in Ukraine and in each passing day I’m growing wearier, my brain is tiring of the images and narrative of those most impacted as well as the seemingly unattainable resolution of peace and as that happens fatigue enters. When my brain gets fatigued, I allow myself to become disengaged and dismissive to my connectedness, to my interdependence toward others and dare I say, my compassion for others. I cease to care. War diminishes goodness, both as aspiration and as inspiration. There is truth in the song which says “War—what is it good for? Absolutely nothing!” As I sit very still on my thinking chair, I ask myself – How do I stay mentally and morally vigilant while the way of war lingers? Now, there’s no magically pill but throughout the years I have learned some wisdom in responding to both natural and human caused disasters. I know if I limit media exposure my level of anxiety is reduced. A lessen anxiety keeps me more viable. I know when I receive and provide warm, comforting, social support, I becomes more settled, assured and hopeful. I know in finding ways of expressing kindness, patience, and compassion it helps me see the essences of others. (Let me again rephrasing an old Aesop fable – “without a sense of caring, there can be no sense of community” and remember “no act of caring, no matter how small, is ever wasted.”) I also know if I eat well and rest well, my body becomes more resilient. With a resilient body my prayer life becomes more intentional. Even when, especially when, I notice a diminishing of strength, I know where my soul is restored.
Scripture Reading: Proverbs 4:23
“Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life.”
How are you living thoughtfully?
Where do you experience the goodness of life?
How do you reduce your anxiety?
Prayer: Holy God, let me be guided by a caring Spirit and let me use my gifts to carry the burdens of others. Strengthen my resolve to be steadfast in my faithfulness. Amen.