It’s been about a month since I last blogged, and we’re still here. Depending on your perspective on things right now, you read “we’re still here” in one of two ways. We’re still in this awful quarantine, there is no end in sight and I’m over it. Or we’re still here, for which I am grateful and I’m actually adjusting to the new normal. Either perspective is fine and there is no judgement here, but the latter perspective is not only more positive, it’s more empowering.

We’re still here y’all! If you’re reading this, you’re still here. And if that doesn’t make you shout, let me help you out. We are in the midst of a pandemic that has taken the lives of hundreds of thousands of people around the world, yet you are here with breath in your body and blood pumping through your veins. While you may have experienced heart-breaking loss during this season, which I’m not discounting, you still have a life to live here. And that’s something to celebrate.

This post is a follow up to or a Part Two to “The Golden Side of Things.” I wrote that one last month highlighting some of the good or “golden” things that have come out of this global health crisis. Since we’re still here, I wanted to share some insights with you that might help you during this time that certainly have inspired me. Don’t worry, I’m not just going to simply tell you to read a book or go walk outside (although those things are helpful). I’d like to go beyond giving you things to do and share with you some ideas on how and what to think.

  1. Shift your view of stay at home orders. If you are constantly thinking and operating as if you are under house arrest, you will likely drive yourself insane. Most of us are not advised to self-quarantine unless we are sick. That means that you can get out of the house to get some fresh air by taking a walk or a drive, and exercising. You still have freedom, even if some of the things we’re used to doing have been put on pause right now.
  2. Practice thankfulness. I know whenever I am disappointed or saddened by something, it always lifts me up to think about something for which I am thankful. When you focus your thoughts towards finding all the things for which you are grateful, it can bring a sense of joy and peace to your heart that you might not think is possible.

    I’m thankful for Spring flowers!

  3. Focus on the things you can control. Sure, there are a lot of things we can not control right now. But they’re also many things over which we do have control. One of the big things we can control right now is how we treat ourselves. I saw a great quote the other day that you’ll see below. This is so good. Look at this time as an opportunity to do some much needed self-care that perhaps you’ve been neglecting. Do some inner work on your heart, mind and spirit. Spend time creating a self-care regimen that you can continue beyond this season.
  4. Watch your thoughts. Thoughts become things and if you have nothing but good thoughts circulating inside, you manifest good things. Believe it or not, you can control your thoughts by first being conscious of them. If a negative thought happens to cross your mind, don’t get frustrated or disappointed. Just replace it with a positive one.
  5. Celebrate and honor life. Find the beauty and purpose in every single moment you have here on Earth. Honor, appreciate and love on all the people you have in your life. How you choose to celebrate life and honor the ones you love is personal. Just make sure that when you do it, do it with your whole heart.

In a sermon my Pastor Keith Battle gave this past Sunday, he said something that really stuck with me. He was giving words of wisdom to those who may be suffering from a loss – lost loved one, job, home, car, personal item, whatever. “Whatever God is going to do in your life, He’s going to do it with who’s left, not who left. He will do it with what’s left, not what left. Work with what you have left. Every miracle is in what is left.” And if you’ve lost a loved one, “be inspired by their life, not traumatized by their death.”

I pray that something I presented here inspired, encouraged or comforted you in some way. If it did, all I ask is that you pay it forward. Share it with someone else so that they can be inspired, encouraged and comforted as well. We’re all in this together so we’ve got to take care of one another. As always, I’m sending each and every one of you light and love.