I sit in my writing nook and my mind is filled with all the things that seem to be hitting a little too close to home today, not to mention the last couple of weeks, even months.

We gathered around the t.v once more and felt shock and took note and gasped prayers and felt speechless and looked at each other. An unwanted routine lately.

And the temptation is to let it all settle on my heart and my mind, and without thinking, allow tremors of fear and ripples of heartsickness seep into my being. Those things will always find a reason to try to lurk there anyway.

But the longer I sit here, with tragedy and drama and panic so close to home, the more I am certain that to let those things take up residence is to let those things win.

And doesn’t that apply to anything hard or tragic? It doesn’t have to be radicals on Parliament Hill. It can be our cancer battles. It can be the ruins of our reputations at work. It can be the hurt-filled separation. The forever-long custody battle. The chaos of Superstorms. Trauma still awake in our hearts from our past.
Any awful thing.

And in my heart, while I type this out with shaky hands, I make a firm decision. That despite what evil thinks it has, I ultimately get to choose what it will do to me. To us.

So it cannot take root where Hope dwells, where Faith gleams in its tiny mustard seed mold, where Right is threaded into our very fabric, where Light casts its net and sends shadows away.

And the only shadow I’ll accept is the gentle shadow of His presence, where nothing is so big or scary that we can’t find assurance and peace. Where He asks me daily, “Will you trust me still?” and knowing the story He’s written me into already, and having already learned He Is Answer Enough, I always declare “yes”.

A hard yes. Hard because we want Him to sweep in and with arm outstretched clear the surface completely. Zap every enemy. Stomp every obstacle. Clear up the disease. Look like the hero we think we deserve.

The way they thought He would over 2000 years ago.

But Hope, and Faith, and Right, and Light aren’t for magic wands. And His mandate has never wavered. And like 2000 years ago, He’s still all about the heart of the matter.

And when the heart of the matter is where He resides, nothing else can persevere. Nothing.

We turn the t.v off, gather around the table, eating stew and being thankful we’re just here. Despite the hits the world keeps taking, there’s a kind of reverent solace in tidying kitchens and working in garages and writing tomorrows blogs.

A solace and a deciding of what wins. Of who wins.

And it’d be silly to deny it. I will worry, I will flinch, I will weep, I will shudder.

BUT.

I will choose not to own it, or be owned by it.

For I already belong to the Great Overcomer, the Psalm 27:1 God.

The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? ”

That is what’s mine. And that’s a lot to have at the end of the day, as I sit here and type.

I don’t know how many more things will hit close to home this week, this month, this year, this decade.

But those things can’t win.

Not when we keep Him closer still.

Not when He keeps us close to Home.