Let’s just talk… a different kind of article.
For the first time ever, I am positive that I have something in common with all my readers—a global pandemic. Forevermore, I believe we will probably refer to life as before, during, or after the pandemic. In fact, at this point we may even wonder if there will even be an “after” (I choose not to consider that though).
So, now what? Those words bubbled up the moment I first heard the pandemic announcement. You see, I had been walking through a series of now what experiences still left over from 2019. I could not believe one more challenge had entered my story. Seriously Lord, how much more am I to experience?
As God would have it, early this year (pre-pandemic) I was asked to speak to a group of ladies at a local church. My topic: Moving Beyond Your “Now What” Season. Seriously? How was I to know that a month later we would all be sharing the same now what? If I knew then, what I know now, would my recommendations be any different? Let’s explore that…
What is a Now What?
Life presents us with a series of moments where we wonder what our next step will be. It can be as simple as a traffic jam on your way to an important appointment. Or a sudden rain shower but your umbrella is in the car. A bit more serious: Your employer downsizes, and you are left without a job; relationship breakup; unexpected health challenges; rent increases or perhaps you are suddenly widowed. Now what’s can be joyful… high school or college graduation; new baby; a first date. Some are life changing and some are just mere inconveniences part of everyday life. In all cases, change follows as you explore the unknown.
How to Move Beyond Now What?
How do you take hold of your next season during your now what season? Consider these first steps:
- Be who you say you are. Take inventory of who you are. There is freedom in accepting all that God has purposed you to be. If you doubt your worth, read Psalm 139. Know that you are beautifully and wonderfully made!
- Be open to spiritual and personal growth. Ask the question, what am I to learn from all this? What do I leave behind? What treasures do I take with me? It’s a process. Trust God to lead you.
- Surround yourself with encouragers and those that will speak truth into your life. Who can you be real with? Who gets you? Let go of naysayers and embrace those on the same growth path. Welcome fresh new perspectives.
- Find your happy place. It can be as simple as a comfortable chair by a window, or your favorite park bench.
- Be intentional about creating your life story. Be curious. Be authentic. Be hopeful. Life may have happened to you but you can explore how God meant it for you. In Romans 8:28 (NIV ) it says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
Same Recommendations Apply
As I listen to the recording of my February message, I realize that the same recommendations apply. This is not the first challenge we’ve faced, and it won’t be the last. Our lives are being remodeled—an unexpected makeover. We embrace it and consider how God will use our ah-ha’s to bless others. Because as I often say, “You matter. God said so. Do something about it.”
We’ve all been walking through a now what season, correct? How will our lives be different as we begin to step forward? What choices will we make? What lessons will we pass on to next generations? And yes, there is joy in the journey—let’s embrace this as our next life adventure? Will you join me?
Photo by Robin Benzrihem