Stuck is a word I hear often in my work with women going through divorce. I hear comments like “I’m stuck in this divorce, and I don’t know how to move forward.” Or, “I’m stuck and I don’t know how to stop thinking about him.” Or “I’m stuck on this roller coaster of erratic, unpredictable emotions and I don’t know how to get off!” Going through any difficult situation sometimes causes us to repeat behaviors that aren’t doing us any good. Divorce gives us more opportunity to get stuck because there is so much change so fast, so we are paralyzed by the magnitude of the disruption absolutely everywhere we turn. We get bogged down. Stuck.
As you know, I am trying to be a God follower, so when I’m stuck I often turn to the Bible for inspiration or encouragement or direction. I used to not read the book of Ecclesiastes very often because it seems to be saying, “Grab all the gusto you can because eventually you are going to end up rotting in the grave like everyone else.” But I’ve discovered that Ecclesiastes is full of good advice: like “Each day is God’s gift. it’s all you get in exchange for the hard work of staying alive. Make the most of each one! Whatever turns up, grab it and do it. And heartily!” Sometimes we get so immersed in the rational trying-to-figure-everything-out-and-do-everything right part of our lives, that we forget to enjoy how juicy and fascinating each day really is. I took those words from Anne Lamott in her book Bird by Bird: “Rationality squeezes out much that is rich and juicy and fascinating.”
Let’s forget for today that we don’t have as much money as we want. Forget that we need to lose 10 pounds, or that we have to go to a party alone. Let’s ignore that one dumb person in our life who just doesn’t get it. Celebrate the fact that you ‘get it’ and even though you have to do some sobbing and screaming occasionally, you understand the wild sanctity of this gift of sparkling around on planet earth for awhile. We’ll have to pay the bills and fix the leaky roof and pay for that extra piece of pie eventually. But today, let’s throw caution to the wind and heartily enjoy every God-ordained pleasure we can.
I’m loving today already … and I think God is saying to me this very day, “Yes! Yes! Yes! Seize life! Eat bread with gusto. Drink wine with a robust heart. Oh yes — God takes pleasure in your pleasure!” Ecclesiastes 9:7 (The Message)