Of course we change as we get older, and the unexpected events in life are usually the key events that kick off a metamorphosis in us. These changes are often difficult and painful. Paradigm shifts are tough to deal with, and it's frustrating and confusing to find yourself turned upside down and questioning all you know. But in the end, it can lead to wisdom and discovery that helps us to build a better life.
We don't plan for the unexpected. We don't plan for the death, the illness, the injury, the accident, the job change, the family situation, the friend that betrays you, the job/promotion you didn't get, the opportunity that got away, the door that closed and you don't know why, the thing that just didn't work out, the loss, the thing you didn't ask for but got anyway, the dream that turned sour, the goal that crumbled, or the million other ways that life goes wrong. But they happen, not because God is angry or for any retribution against us, but because this is life, and life is unfair, unpredictable, and uncontrollable.
If we're lucky, we gain wisdom and become better people because of it. We gain virtues we need. We realize that our goals change. The chips are filed off our shoulders. We see how we've outgrown old things and are growing into new things. If we're really lucky, we lose our fear and embrace a life not made of starry-eyes fantasy, but with full knowledge that reality is gritty and painful, but good things can also happen if we persevere and stay the course.
Yes, I've lost things and had disappointments. But I'm still alive, and my life isn't even half over. Good things can happen. I believe that. I have changed and am still changing. That's ok, because I see that I need to. I just have to overcome my dislike of ambiguity and learn that the places where I can't have cognitive closure are the places where I have my greatest lessons of living by faith, and trusting that the Spirit will guide me when I can't see the way from where I am to where I'm going.
One gift of middle age is knowing that I'll make it. I've made it through many transitions so far, so I know the Lord will see me through this one. The trick is not to give in to anxiety or fear, but to persevere, and to believe.
That's all today. Take care, and have a great rest of the week.