I am quite sure that I do not need to persuade you with this post that storms are brewing all around you. Most of us are well aware of the multiple storms we face in every facet of our lives every day. If you don’t have enough that are affecting you personally, you can certainly find plenty to worry about by consulting almost any form of media or communication. It is true that if it bleeds, it leads, and there is plenty of bloodletting to go around these days.
It is also true that as we have all lived through the past couple of years of societal unrest topped off with a worldwide pandemic, we have all become more stressed, anxious, and unsettled in our lives and minds. The subject of mental health is thankfully being addressed publicly now when for years it was hidden and regarded as something to be avoided and discussed only in private. As with each of my weekly posts, however, I want to give you hope and light on how to combat all of this.
I have always been fascinated by the phenomena of a tremendous storm such as a hurricane or a tornado. The power of nature to produce such forceful events is awesome to me. I don’t mean to glorify or sensationalize the destructive force and havoc these storms inflict upon us. Where I live in Texas, it was almost exactly two years ago that a devastating tornado passed a few blocks from my house. Fortunately, we sustained no damage, but within walking distance from my home, houses and businesses are just now getting rebuilt and reopened.
Even more fascinating of an event with these extreme storms is the development of the eye of the storm. While destruction, chaos, and mayhem are happening all around it, in the eye it is entirely peaceful. Strangely and miraculously so. The thought and the analogy occurred to me, how should I and how can we live our lives in the eye of the storm? The truth is, the storms in our life are likely not going to go away. We could make an excellent case that they are going to continue to intensify. Despite that, how can we find our way to the eye?
Before I answer that question, if you have never experienced the eye of a storm, allow me to try to describe it. When storms arrive, we all know what it looks like and feels like with the heavy winds, rain, thunder, lightning, and often hail accompanying it. Our senses are on fire with the pandemonium erupting all around us. And then, without warning, it happens. We pass through the eye. It may be only for a brief few moments or minutes, but suddenly everything goes entirely still, serene, and quiet. We see the results of what has transpired and know that more is coming quickly behind it. However, in this moment of tranquility, we come back to our senses and find our inner peace.
What do you need to experience this type of peace and tranquility in the storms of your life? How can you go to that place of respite when everything all around you seems to be falling apart?
I do not pretend to have a silver bullet answer. I think the answer is unique to each one of us. What I do believe is that each of us possesses within ourselves the capacity to take ourselves there mentally when we find ourselves in the storm. It takes effort, and it takes practice, but I believe that we can all do it. Further, if you are reading this article, you have a desire to live with a higher purpose than just living to survive one day to the next. I believe you have a God-sized desire to leave a lasting impression and legacy that will live beyond your lifetime. In seeking this higher standard, we find the benchmarks to achieve the significance we long for.
So, in conclusion, my challenge and my hope for you in reading this post are that you will seek to live beyond the storms of your life and embrace the higher standards you desire. Take time to reflect, meditate and visualize how you can get to a place of calm where you can be at your best and not be affected by all of the chaos around you.
If you minimize the storms in your own life, you are likely to find that you can share this gift with others around you. The bigger your eye gets, the more people you get to join you, the less powerful the storms become.
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