I purchased a card once that had a man sitting in the middle of the desert, looking disheveled, holding a handle in his hand, and the caption read, “I used to have a handle on life but then it fell off”. With the beginning of the New Year there can be this sense that if the handle fell off in 2015, now in 2016 it might attach again. Yet what we find happening at the end of year just moves with us into the New Year. There is a sense if only one could find the right device, the handle on life would be securely in place, and whatever happens there is a means to manage it, understand it, and have some control in it. A means to ride the tiger in a sense, without getting thrown off and eaten.
The handle is a very important part of life. Often the emphasis is on what the handle connects to. The situation or person that needs to be opened or changed or moved. How does one move this stone? How does one get a handle on an overwhelming issue? How can someone feel life is manageable and not just a series of uncontrollable events? How does one put a handle on fear?
What if, rather than a way of controlling and managing life, the handle is what connects us to ALL the energy of life. What if the handle is God? Looking at it as how one chooses to hold on to God as a way of getting a hold of the person or situation. That makes whatever is on the other side of the handle less influential than the means of connecting to it. The question becomes less about how does one roll away the stone and more about how does one’s faith and relationship with God connect to this stone? The handle is how one connects God to the situations in life.
Over the next few weeks, we will look at these questions as a way to begin 2016, using these questions as a way to engage our faith life rather than make life manageable. May God be your connection to all this New Year brings!!