As a writer, observation is one of my most important tools. Awareness of this tool causes me to listen for dialects when people speak and watch how their actions synch with emotions. This practice helps me develop realistic novels as I incorporate those rhythms into the characters who people my books.
Observation notes interesting quirks such as the depth of a dimple, a spontaneous laugh or fingers drumming on a barn wood plank. The benefits of observation add color and texture to my words without plagiarizing the reality of lives around me.
Sometimes an image or a word surprises with its potential. I observe it, reflect on it and journal through it.
Soon it becomes a theme, a sentence that stretches into a paragraph or as in this case — a quote that morphs into a blog post.
“Every great change is preceded by chaos.” – Deepak Chopra
This statement pummeled into my soul like a snare drum in the early morning fog.
How appropriate when thinking of the last two years of our history. The chaos COVID created as it marched around the globe. The way it changed how we lived, isolated, shopped, ate out, and sadly — how we treated one another.
This chaos has forced us to consider the depths of our value systems, what is truly important versus the urgency of the moment. With stunning accuracy, chaos created change.
Yet chaos in our journey does not have to define us. We can process the changes and land on our knees — an appropriate stance for any soul-seeker living in chaos.
Gradually, as the murky concrete of change became our new normal, we learned to replace the chaos with a peace that passes all understanding. We could still find hope and joy in the living of a different reality.
Life is still a beautiful place to be. Still surrounded by love, joy, peace and hope.
We may dread the next chaos yet be determined to address the coming changes as better people. To approach our modifications not as we once were, but better versions of ourselves.
I believe it is important to monitor how we have changed, how we reacted to the chaos. We cannot learn if we do not reflect and analyze. When there is a disturbance in the force, the chaos of change may creep ever closer.
We do not have to let chaos destroy us.
Even the Divine Three warn that everything will eventually change. Foundations will shake (Psalm 82:5). Earthquakes in various places. Wars and rumors of wars. Peril and danger on every street. The love people once had for God and others growing cold.
We have seen past chaos turn into positive change:
- Civil rights legislation making us more aware of how skin color divides us
- Revivals around the world that pointed societies back to the God who loves us
- A national conversation about the abuses of children, i.e. the MeToo movement
Experience teaches us that some change will never happen unless we embrace the chaos. Acknowledge how it happened. Fix its source. Make the important changes.
Sometimes I hate the observation that pushes me toward reflective melancholy. Growth hurts. Too much stretching becomes a stress.
Yet by changing what is negative and moving toward what is better, we become stronger. More able to face the next chaos with realistic expectations underscored by hope.
As chaos fades, peace can replace it. New normals can surface. Empower us to love God and love others in deeper ways.
And eventually, if we let it — the chaos will fade and leave a halo of shining Hope.
©2022 RJ Thesman – All Rights Reserved
The book of the month is Just for Today: Hope for Single Moms. Help a single mom reach through her chaos to find hope.