Sunday, April 21, 2013

What Kind of a World...?

The last few months have been trying. I found myself worrying quite a bit. Sometimes my feelings even strayed into the realm of anxiety, fear, or hopelessness. I'm not concerned about the aspects of life closest to me, like family or work. It's the stuff happening in the world out there.

Recent events in Boston, school shootings, an economy that doesn't appear to be getting better. People, in general, just seem to be more angry, more uncaring, and more concerned only with taking care of #1. I found myself sometimes saying , "What kind of a world are we living in?"

The fact that I have young children only complicated the matter for me. Having kids added the dimension: "What kind of world will be left for my children?"

Addressing my Fears
Two things helped me address these fears. First, I heard someone say that he, too, used to worry about the kind of world his kids would inherit, but he became too depressed. Instead, he chose to focus on what kind of kids he's leaving to this world. This shift in perspective has had a huge impact on me. I may not be able to impact worldwide change for the better, but I can raise my children to be people of hope, generosity, compassion, and love. The world will need people like that.

Second, I realized that I was focusing on the darkness. I had taken my eyes off of God, and I was looking only at the negativity and evil. I had forgotten my goal of placing myself in His care and trusting His providence. 

Making these two shifts in my perspective has greatly helped. I get the feeling this will be a long road, though. After all, there will always be evil and darkness in this world-- this isn't heaven. We deal with the evil now; someday, our children will. My goal is to leave the world children who rely on God as their source of strength and hope. Perhaps they'll be able to bring that hope to others someday. 

Photo credit: Shabbir Siraj via photopin cc