You Can’t Go Back

I’ve heard it so many times here in AmeriCorps and out in missions field: “I just want to go back to the way it used to be.”

Life used to be comfortable.  It used to be secure.  It made sense.  And ever since we took those tentative first steps of faith (be it Faith following God or faith in something else), our journey has led us out of our old lives and into something so much bigger.  So unknown.

We face trials and struggles in our personal lives, within out teams, and we wonder how we got to this point.  And we look back at what our lives used to be and we wonder if it will ever be that way again.

There is a simple answer: No.

We are no longer the people we used to be.  We cannot go back because people change, we have changed, and we have grown.  Like it or not, life is no longer simple.  There are no easy choices, no simple formula to finding your path in life.  Every day will be a battle that we wage not against others, but against ourselves.

As children, we ran free.  As we began to grow older, we became burdened with responsibilities and commitments.  If we don’t focus on finding a job with good pay, we become irresponsible.  If we chase our dreams, we become the fool.  Our mindset changes, and we put aside our dreams for financial security, becoming responsible adults.

Over the past week, I have heard multiple Corps Members comment that they want everything to be like is was back during CTI, almost 6 months ago (or more).  The simple fact is that we can’t go back.  People have left the program.  Teams have changed.  Hurricane Sandy hit and our lives were turned upside down as we saw things that we never wanted to see.

Life has changed us.

Sometimes I look into the mirror and don’t recognize the eyes staring back at me.  These experiences have given us new focus, given us purpose.

Hoping to return to how things used to be is to try to undo all these experiences.  All we can hope for is to continue to grow, to continue to develop as individuals and as a community.

God Bless and PEACE


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