I’m guessing we all know someone who has said this very thing in the midst of a “judging” comment. It’s as if there is a universal human experience that can be drawn upon when needed. I’m much more closely drawn to the one who says, “I call ‘em as I see ‘em” in that they are attuned to the relative nature of human experience and thus, human interaction.
The French author Anais Nin summed it up perfectly when she said, “We don’t see the world as it is, rather we see the world as we are.” In truth, our own experience is the only lens through which we can see and experience events. Conversely, what we see and how we experience the world is, if properly reflected upon, a pretty good indicator of our own personal, emotional, and spiritual health.
2023 is now fully upon us. We have made our resolutions and are critically deciding upon which if any we’ll adhere to. A great deal of this work depends upon our world view as we move into 2023. A lot of our world view depends upon how we gather, process, and internalize the world around us. If we look at the world uncritically, we see war, famine, recession, political turmoil, pandemic, global climate crisis, gun violence, civil unrest….the list goes on and on. Am I suggesting these issues don’t exist? Nope. Am I suggesting we should ignore them? Nope. Am I suggesting we don’t wrestle with them? Nope. Then, what in the world am I suggesting?!
Only, that we contextualize and process these issues with critical thought. If we allow ourselves to be pulled into the abyss of hopelessness, fear, and nihilism, we will suffer spiritual and emotional exhaustion as well as depressive tendencies. If we allow the issues to pile on us one on another, we will be overwhelmed and the joy in our lives will be quashed. Remember, we don’t see the world as it is, we see the world as we are.
So, as we move into 2023, be mindful. Are we hopeful? Do we feel hopeless? Is there joy in our lives? Do we look to the future with eagerness? Are we able to identify and confront attitudes, issues, and relationships that need to be set right? If we can begin to get our arms around ourselves, we will change how we see and experience the world.
Commit yourselves to a healthy spiritual life. Commit yourselves to being in healthy relationships with others. Commit yourselves to expending your time and resources on things that matter and bring you peace and contentment.
My prayer for each of us in 2023 is peace and joy.
This Sunday we witness Jesus’ baptism and talk about our own baptism. Should be a great day.
See you Sunday,