Staff Thoughts

All the Feels- by Krista

All the Feels

by Krista Monson

My mother said something to me when I was young that has stuck with me for decades. “Emotions are valid. It’s your attitude that is your choice.”

She constantly reminded me, and still reminds me today, that there is nothing wrong with feeling angry, frustrated, sad, upset, jealous, or disappointed. Those are emotions. Feelings. Every single one is completely natural. The choice we have is what we do with those emotions; especially when interacting with others. As a child, when I chose harsh words and actions towards my siblings to reflect my feelings, I was rewarded with a time out. Time to reconsider my attitude and actions. Time to take a break, breathe, and make a new choice.

Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry…” James 1:19b

Decades later, I still practice choosing my attitude amidst days of emotions. A common phrase a friend and I use is “All the Feels” to express how overwhelmed we can be by the sheer number of emotions we experience in a day. It can be tiring. It can leave us not knowing how to proceed. I take comfort in the reminder that emotions are valid and I can take a time out to breathe, pray for patience and guidance, and consider my attitude and how I interact with the world.

Stars- by D.J.

Stars

By D.J. Chatelaine

Many of my earliest memories are as a two-year-old, head always looking up. Because I was a sapling amidst a forest of family members, as the youngest, I naturally had to look up to my mom, my dad and my sisters. I don’t know if all that skyward gazing made my neck sore, but what I do remember is being transfixed by what was going on in the sky: vibrant rainbows that came after tremendous thunderstorms, clouds wispy like frosting and others that looked like mountains towering over the Minnesota plains, orange sunrises and purple sunsets, a sky full of stars on a crisp winter evening.

Winter nights can be difficult: seemingly dark and endless, it makes our troubles, worries and sorrows that much greater. I can think of many nights where all lights go out in a sea of ink. We can get easily lost and wonder if the sun even exists. Yet, you look up and see a single star shining in the night sky. Like that star, each one of us reflects God’s beauty through our individual inner lights: your personality, your passions, your gifts. When we bring those individual lights together as a community, something amazing happens: our sky is lit up by endless stars, a sky so light that we wonder if the night is real. This New Year, hold onto that inner light and share it with the world around you: your friends, your family, your peers, your co-workers, people you love, people you don’t. Let’s be a sky full of stars.