The Little Things: Handling the ‘turbulence’ of life
By KELLY PRESTON, Special to The Paper
On a recent flight from Atlanta to Columbus, Ohio, my daughters and I experienced some pretty significant turbulence while 30,000 feet up in the air. Needless to say, we were a bit rattled and thankful when it was over. Then it happened again, and there was more gratitude when it was over. We finally landed safely and enjoyed the weekend with family that we hadn’t seen pre-pandemic.
It hit me while on that bumpy flight that life can be a lot like flying in an airplane.
We can’t control most things in life. Sitting in a huge metal tube flying through the air is a sure-fire way to see if you’re a control freak! Letting go of control is hard for many people and yet that is exactly what’s needed in order to experience not only a pleasant flight but also a pleasant life. Surrender isn’t a popular concept, but sometimes letting go and letting God is the best thing we can do. “Be still, and know that I am God.” (Psalm 46:10a)
Difficult times are bound to happen in this life. Like turbulence on a flight, life can be full of bumps that often come out of nowhere. The phone call from the doctor with a life-threatening diagnosis. The knock on the door with bad news. Not getting the promotion you were counting on. And the list goes on…
Jesus said, “In this life you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)
So how can we handle the “turbulence” of life? I certainly don’t have all the answers, but I have learned a few things over the years as I’ve had my share of turbulent times.
• Pray. Pour out your heart to God. He can handle all of your emotions—the good, the bad, and the ugly.
• Surround yourself with supportive people. We were created for relationship. Find people that encourage you and that you can be your true self with.
• Focus on the what matters most. Let go of trivial things and prioritize what is important to you. “Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.” (Colossians 3:2)
• Give thanks in all circumstances. Difficult times can teach us some of the most powerful lessons in life. Be grateful for what you’re learning and how you’re growing through the challenges.
• And pray some more. Again, God can handle your emotions and He wants to hear from you.
My hope is that the next time you experience turbulence, you’ll be able to sit back, relax, and enjoy the flight!
Kelly Preston is a nurse-turned-stay-at-home-mom to four amazing and energetic children. Though she sometimes forgets to buy toilet paper amidst their busy schedules, Kelly finds time to run RACE for the Orphans, a non-profit focused on supporting adoptive families. She loves Jesus, people, a really good book, and pondering the little things.