This has been a strange season.

I don’t need to convince anyone of that, but maybe we all need a reminder that, no matter what this year throws at us, we still get to choose the path we take.

We can choose to see the challenges of this year as opportunities or as limitations and burdens.

Opportunity to serve, to encourage, to celebrate, to grow and stretch and change. Opportunity to try new things, to settle into quieter times, to love on our families in more specific ways. We’ve been at home, restricted, confined, limited. But these are opportunities, too.

When someone complains about a situation, will we join the grumbling? Will we listen to their pain? Will we offer grace and hope?

When someone makes a political declaration, will we take up arms? Instantly unfriend? Rally the troops and engage the fight? Or will we hear them out and ask questions to further understand? To share ideas? To deepen relationships and chase unity?

This year has taken a lot from us, but it has also given us a lot. Don’t squander the opportunities. Choose who you want to be and what path you want to take.