Lessons From These Difficult Days: Order

Hats off to Trader Joe’s!  My son needed groceries yesterday.  He eats keto – and a lot of meat.  And meat has been, well, hard to find.  He called Trader Joe’s yesterday and asked if they had ground beef in stock.  “Sure,” was the answer and when my son arrived soon afterward, they not only had meat in stock but vegetables, dairy, eggs and an entire store of groceries.  Compare that to my trip, the night before, to our local chain grocery store where every single shelf in the produce, milk, egg, cheese and meat departments was completely empty.  Thoroughly wiped out.

What was the difference?  For one thing, order.  Trader Joe’s was limiting the number of people in the store at one time.  (There was an orderly line waiting outside which my son said moved quickly.)  Each person was limited to two of any one item.  He got his two packages of ground beef…as well as several other types of meat.  (So glad he does his own shopping and cooking!)  At the store where I tried to shop, people were all over the store.  Many were just taking pictures and/or killing time (or so it seemed).  There was a hastily written sign on the door that said all carts had been sanitized; however, folks leaving the store simply mixed their carts in with all the other carts making it impossible to tell sanitized carts from used carts.  Someone at Trader Joe’s was keeping the carts organized and separated as each customer left the store.

A sense of order is essential.  I believe we function better – physically and emotionally – when order is in place.  Not surprising, really, as our Heavenly Father is a God of order.  We began studying the book of Genesis on Sunday evenings at the beginning of this year.  We began with creation (shocking but true!) and God’s sense of order is evidenced not only in His creation but in His creating.

I have also seen, repeatedly, the benefit of order in classrooms, in homeschools and in different types of work environments.  Each classroom, each home, each one of our lives may require a unique sense of order but order, nonetheless, is always necessary and beneficial.  Order is often found in routine but the two are not completely synonymous.  These last days and weeks have certainly upended our routines.  Daily schedules and agendas have been seemingly eliminated.  However, order can still be achieved.

It may be time for a new routine – hopefully, a temporary new routine – but creating one will help bring a sense of order to our homes.  To our souls.  This promotes peace, more calm and better overall well-being.  I have caught myself, multiple times over the last days, telling myself “I will get to that later.  I have nothing but time on my hands this week.”  I’ve started not simply procrastinating but becoming lazy.   And that affects me mentally (it makes me tired!), emotionally (I get cranky) and spiritually.  Not exactly where I want to go in the weeks that lie ahead.  I want to – I need to! –  establish order in my personal life and in my home.

As well, I want to do my part to maintain a sense of order in my community.  Officials are making tough decisions.  I completely appreciate how hard closures and lock-down policies are for everyone; however, constantly trying to find a loophole or to make my situation an exception is not helpful.  If everyone’s job, child, need, or situation is the exception to the rule…..there will only be chaos. As I pray for our leaders, I want to pray for my attitude as well.

This post, genuinely, began as a thank-you and round of applause for Trader Joe’s. (I was so impressed after my son got home last night.)  My thoughts seemed to expand but they are not a commentary in any way.  No criticism but, prayerfully, just an encouragement to create a new routine.  A sense of order for you, your family, your church family and any other part of your community.  However that might look for you.  There is no telling how each of us might be impacted when we return to our “old” routines.

By the way, that photo above is not from Trader Joe’s.  It is from Unsplash, where I get just about all of my photos (including this one to the right).  I just loved the beautiful produce.

How about those ordered and organized veggies?  Makes me swoon:)

6 thoughts on “Lessons From These Difficult Days: Order

  1. Jennifer, hi! I really appreciate your take on ‘order’ … routines and rhythms give our lives structure especially in times like this.

    I love that we worship a God of order. May He help us how to enact and orderly yet flexible lifestyle into our lives in this challenging season …

    P.S. I do love Trader Joe’s!


    1. Orderly yet flexible – that’s what we all need right now, isn’t it?! So glad you stopped by, Linda!!

  2. I agree, finding some kind of order and routine definitely helps even when it’s a completely different routine from normal! And yes, order in the supermarket makes a difference. I was getting really stressed today by a man who kept standing too close to me and when the cashier tried to tell him to stand back he made a big fuss and asked to see a manager! On the plus side I did see toilet roll there for the first time in about three weeks!

    1. It just makes you shake your head?!?! But, funny, that toilet paper makes us feel “back to normal” if just a bit!!:) Hope you are having a healthy week!

  3. Awww, Jennifer, in some ways Order is the language of my heart. I thrive when I have order in my routines, my schedule, my life. When chaos slips in, it becomes my kryptonite. I’ve been learning how to bring order in the midst of this uncertain season.

    I’m totally resonating with you on this!

    1. Order is your heart language! I totally get that. I cling to my order, habits, and routine. And tend to get really flustered when others interrupt or upend my order?! Just sayin:) Something else I am learning during these days. I hope you have a restful weekend. Always glad when you stop by the blog!!

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