A New Appreciation

This time in history is surreal. It’s strange to be told we can’t work or play or gather. It’s scary and terrible in a lot of ways. However, I believe God is working this for our ultimate good.

For those willing to trust Him and allow Him to work in us, there will be fruit from this. There are already so many great things happening. Look at the environment, healing itself. The Venice Canals are clear, you can clearly see the Los Angeles skyline, and people in India can see the Himalayan peaks for the first time in decades. We have the gift of time. Many of us are spending more time with our families, which could be good or stressful, depending on our family dynamics. It seems as if the world has slowed down. Our busyness has dissipated.

I also know it’s not comfortable. Not for me and not for many others. A little bit of extra time is nice but when it means reduced or non-existent income, lack of places to go and fun things to do, and being isolated from those we care about, it is hard. Really hard.

So many parts of this feel empty and lonely and out of control. But, here’s the truth; nothing was ever in our control. We never knew when any moment might be our last, even before this virus. God is, was, and will forever be, in control. God is good in spite of everything else.

He can see what we can’t even imagine. Just like we don’t jump off the train when the tunnel and darkness envelope us, we can’t give up now. Yes, it’s scary. Yes it’s dark. No, we don’t know what will happen next.

Not long ago we celebrated Easter and the resurrection. Well, it was dark in the tomb after the crucifixion too. The stone was rolled over the opening and it got dark. No one knew what was supposed to happen next. The disciples were locked inside, just like we are, afraid of what lay outside their door. Hope seemed gone. Their normal was stolen.

What happened next would erase all that darkness. The stone, with all its heaviness, was rolled away and Jesus rose again. He will move away this heaviness too. If we let him, He will give us a peace that surpasses all human understanding in the midst of all of this. And one day, I pray very soon, the heaviness of this lockdown will roll away from the world.

If we are wise, we’ll look at things with new eyes. Humans rarely appreciate things until they lose them. When our normal lives start up again, hopefully, we will appreciate the things we temporarily lost. Perhaps we will develop a new appreciation for our jobs that we couldn’t go to for months. People have already been admiring and appreciating the jobs our teachers and medical personnel do everyday.

May we once again remember that gathering together with others is a privilege and a joy. Maybe we will even learn to appreciate the gift of time, something we never seem to have enough of.

And we will honor those who put others first and took care of them in their time of need. The companies who made new things to meet needs, and especially the medical community who gave all they had and more.

Let’s all try to be a little less selfish, appreciate all the gifts around us, and thank the Lord for being with us through it all, for He never leaves us nor forsakes us.

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