Lately, I’ve been reading the news about Israel and Palestine, the return to war in Iraq, children dying, unarmed men getting killed by police and on and on. One bad story leads to another and when I read news online, it seems especially awful with the way the horror continues and seems to multiply. I was down about this on Thursday, driving to see some friends, when I looked up in the sky and saw a double rainbow. One of the arcs was so vibrant, I could see the entire Roy G. Biv, naming each color one by one. The other one was more faint, but still obviously a rainbow. Florida has some gorgeous rainbows because it rains so often and the sun usually comes up during or right after. The rainbow(s) reminded me of God’s promise not to destroy God’s people. Even when I am saddened by the news and feeling hopeless about the state of our world, God’s presence is with me and God’s promise is true.
After seeing the rainbow, I took a wrong turn and ended up behind a car at a stoplight. To my surprise, there was one phrase on the back of the car: Resistance is Futile. This made me laugh a bit and reminded me how often, when I’m having a difficult day or when everything seems to be going wrong, resisting the struggle never seems to help. Resistance if Futile reminded me of a quote I read in AA’s Big Book about acceptance:
“And acceptance is the answer to all my problems today.
When I am disturbed,
It is because I find some person, place, thing, situation —
Some fact of my life — unacceptable to me,
And I can find no serenity until I accept
That person, place, thing, or situation
As being exactly the way it is supposed to be at this moment.
Nothing, absolutely nothing happens in God’s world by mistake.
Until I could accept my alcoholism, I could not stay sober;
Unless I accept life completely on life’s terms,
I cannot be happy.
I need to concentrate not so much
On what needs to be changed in the world
As on what needs to be changed in me and in my attitudes.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition p. 417
Copyright 1976 A.A.W.S. Inc.
As I thought about the rainbow, the saying on the car and this quote about acceptance, I felt a deep sense of peace. There’s so much I can’t control in this world. If I accept that, maybe it will somehow lead me to spend my energy on changing the only thing that I can – myself and my attitudes. That alone is enough task for the hour.