Return to Normalcy
What does it mean to be normal? How do you know when your life is on track? If your life is out of sync and spiraling downward, what will it take to bring you back to a sense of normal? Drug abusers, alcoholics, food abusers and sex-addicts are all people who live in a bubble that cannot be sustained. So, what does it take for a person who has lived on the edge to come back to a more normal life?
The first step in a return to normalcy is to admit what and who you are and what your life has become. This means that you are able to look in the mirror and not like what you see. Next, the return to normalcy requires a commitment to change. A commitment to change means something has to give. The alcoholic, the criminal, the thief, the spend-thrift must come to a point where he or she admits to themselves that they cannot continue life on the path they are headed. Third the return to normalcy may mean that people who knew you in your former life may not believe, like or appreciate your transformation.
A bar owner asked me why he had not seen a mutual friend. I told him that our friend had given up drinking in an attempt to improve their health. The bar owner looked at me and simply said, “Oh.” In his brief, guttural utterance it occurred to me that non-drinker could make a bar owner uncomfortable because of their desire to live life on another level.
How are you living your life? Are you doing all the things you would like to do? Are you living a life with imagination, hope and optimism, or are you suffocating with a less than fulfilling life? Reach for the refreshing dew drops of mercy that only Jesus Christ can bring. Strive for the best. Reach for the best. Hope for the best. Dream for the best! Then, live your life to the glory of God!
Joel 2: 12 Yet even now, says the Lord,
return to me with all your heart,
with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning;
13 rend your hearts and not your clothing.
Return to the Lord, your God,
for he is gracious and merciful,
slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love,
and relents from punishing. 
Questions for Reflection:
- What does a “Return to Normalcy” mean to you?
- How do you know if your “New Normal” is in sync with God?
Bring me back, Lord. Bring me back to a faith that is pure, a love that is genuine, and a life that makes sense and is founded upon you. Lord, I confess that there have been times when I have gone too far and done too little in witnessing for you. Bring me back, Lord and teach me to live a better life. Bring me back to a new normal, Lord. Lord Jesus, lift me from thoughts of depression that make me sad. Show me how to handle emotional extremes, even as I strive for a new awareness in you. Bless me with your presence. Bless me with your peace. Bless me with a sense of your perspective. Lift me from sinful thoughts and actions, fearful behavior, shortsighted relationships, and bring me back to a closer walk with you. Through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior we pray. Amen.
Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III
Photo by Nicholas Hood III
Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Rev. Hood at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/
More about Nicholas Hood III Ministries at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org
 The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. 1989 (Joe 2:12–13). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.