Prepare for the Journey

Prepare for the Journey

Across the nation people are experiencing significant shifts.  One hopeful shift is that more and more states are opening businesses and loosening stay-at-home orders.  Still, corresponding with this sense of newfound freedom are more discouraging shifts that both open old wounds and bring new pain.   Discouragement that racial injustices are still plaguing our country.  Discouragement that even with loosening COVID standards things aren’t quite “going back to normal” because for numerous people, organizations and congregations, opening up isn’t as “open” as they had hoped.  It’s one thing to patiently wait out short-term mandates, but how does one experience mental wellness in the face of enduring racial inequities, unrest in our cities, and long-term pandemic restrictions?  Fortunately, both the mental health field and faith community offer insights for facing such times.  Both point to the wisdom of preparing for journeys rather than avoiding them.  For instance, Psychiatric Rehabilitation literature emphasizes that mental health recovery isn’t an easy short-term destination, but a lifelong journey with obstacles along the way.  This journey-mindset breeds a perseverance that promotes wellness over the long-haul of any battle.  Likewise, the faith community provides robust resources to aid in maintaining mental wellness throughout challenging times.  In the New Testament, the author of Hebrews encourages readers to “run with perseverance the race marked out for us” (12:1).  The life of faith is depicted here as more of a marathon than a sprint.  While maintaining a future hope in a world restored, these early Christians prepared themselves for a journey, allowing them to face and fight ongoing challenges from a place of wholeness.  As we live in this time of racial injustice and red, yellow and green phases, what steps can you take to prepare for the journey rather than avoid it?

Contact Dave Eckert, Director of Intersect (215) 540-2150 x1286 DEckert@accessservices.org

Featured in the June 2020 Intersect e-letter.