As much of the world turns to look at the Ebola crisis slowly make its way across the globe, we also continue to watch the evolving protests in Ferguson, Missouri as many celebrate the developing news of anticipation of the release of the Nigerian schoolgirls. For those who never suspected this before, more are now aware that global health is our health – what happens in other countries is never in isolation and eventually makes its way to all of our borders. And the death of one too many African American women, men, and children is enough to cause a small town and those who stand in solidarity with it to continue protesting, even as the media’s coverage of the events or any prominent acclaim of justice being served shrinks by the weeks. And after the novelty of bringbackourgirls hashtags plastered across Facebook and Twitter has worn down, many of us are still remembering and taking moments out of our days to whisper prayers that these young women are returned safely.  The world is watching and the seasons are changing.

With the aforementioned events serving as only a snippet of what is happening in our local and international communities, it is a wonder why I would even bother to localize this post to what is happening in my own life. But as I, too, am in a season of change, I am reminded that my posts – as sparse as they have become – serve as a reminder to me and to those who find time to read them of our connection to what is happening around the world.

Just six short months ago, there was so much chaos in my life that I felt the glimmers of hope were slowly fading away. I reached a point where I questioned exactly what it was that I was doing and more importantly, why. All that I thought I knew was (once again) crumbling around me.  Today as I sat in church listening to the sermon on “Lamps without Light” and the importance of remaining steadfast through darkness, I was overwhelmed with gratitude. I thought of what felt like a prolonged season of darkness and the subsequent and amazing shifts in my life that have taken place since that time.

I now celebrate (once again) doing work that I enjoy, learning in an environment where I thrive, watching the dreams of friends and family come to light as they expand their families, earn degrees, receive job promotions and serve their communities. AND I celebrate a world that by will or force must turn their eyes to the injustices across the land as more and more shout “no more.” I watch as a participant in the struggle for affordable care for all and an acknowledgement that the health of one impacts the health of many. I continue to try to live my life in a way that affirms that social justice movements continue long after the cameras leave – the struggles are our forefathers and mothers are actualized in how we live our lives TODAY and in the ways we struggle and fight for others to access opportunities. And I pray, even for those who seem so distantly removed from my life, knowing that the removal of a girl from her home has a lasting impact on her immediate community, as well as those around as they watch, wait, long and mourn.

I see my connection and my purpose in what is happening around the world. And as the seasons change, I prepare to shift while remaining vigilant and alert. Are you watching? Waiting? Remaining steadfast and alert? Are YOU prepared for your shift in season?