An Invitation to Thrive

Last week I tended to some drooping plants.  Their leaves had faded and roots were failing. Some even had fallen over. These plants definitely were NOT doing well.  When doing well, they bloom, grow, and their color looks good. They reach up and engage with the environment. They thrive.

I know what thriving looks like for my plants, but what about for us?  We are beginning another calendar year when we consider what went well and what hasn’t, New Year’s resolutions, and hopes to better ourselves and lives.  But, …what does it mean to thrive?

We are struggling with so many challenges that seem to never end.   Family worries and discord    World crises and fighting.  Living paycheck to paycheck.   Asking “why am I here?  What is my purpose?” Boredom.  Letting go of ways of life that were familiar to us.  Often it can feel like we are simply surviving, just making it from day to day.

When his disciples were struggling, Jesus encouraged them saying, I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”  (John 16).  Jesus reminds us that we can do more than survive.  We are meant to thrive.  God desires our lives to be filled with purpose and value even in a chaotic world.

With my plants, I made changes to help them.  And yes, they are doing better!   I encourage you to read Isaiah 35:1-10 for some great imagery about people and society thriving.  But how about for us? What does it mean to thrive at home, with family, at work?  What does thriving look like as a whole person: body, mind and spirit?  What does it mean to thrive as a resident in one of Baruch’s homes?  As a staff providing care?  What does it mean to thrive as a company dedicated to serving God by serving our elders?

Not only are we entering a new calendar year, but we are entering the year of Baruch’s 25th anniversary.  With God’s help and direction, and a lot of hard work from staff and residents, Baruch has thrived.  Our hope and prayer is that each resident and staff will thrive (not merely survive) in the coming year, and that Baruch will continue to thrive for the next 25 years.

Peace and Blessings,

Chaplain Karen

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