Faith is tested in trial. Strength is refined in hardships. Solidarity is found in isolation. Lesson’s becoming all too evident as the coronavirus continues to spread. Right now, we are having to find whole new ways of living and staying busy within our confinements. We are rethinking our work lives and schedules; picking up the phone to call people we haven’t spoken to in ages. Family dinners (and even breakfast!) being enjoyed around the table again; game nights becoming an evening standard. Even communities of faith are becoming innovative as home living rooms are being transformed into places of worship. Sure, there might not be the same communal feel per se, but there is a silver lining…the time to worship as a family. Under the most peculiar (and threatening) global circumstance, yes we are being tested (1 Peter 1:7) but faith is also blossoming.
In God’s economy, there is no confusion surrounding the importance of family. Families are the building blocks for moral, ethical and thriving societies. Ironically, a pandemic is making space in our lives for families to (re)unite again. An excess of time is being used to strengthen relationships through family Bible studies, unhurried face-to-face conversations, deep and meaningful talks about faith, life and love. Fiction novels being exchanged for the Gospels and deeper studies into the mystical life of Jesus Christ. It seems quite obvious that, if spent wisely, this time of uncertainty could potentially harvest some of the greatest blessings of our lives.
So, could it be that quarantine, lockdowns and social-distancing is allowing for the necessary time and space in our minds to re-think how we’ve been living? To re-evaluate what is most important to us and to God? A whole new perspective and gratitude given to the simple liberties and freedoms we’ve once taken for granted?
As with most unexpected life occurrences, the time we’re given now can be used for good or for bad. For growth or for stagnancy. One thing I can personally attest to is that if we use this time for good – growing in our faith, strengthening our relationship with Jesus and our families – we will be rewarded for it. Certainly, no one wants to experience a global pandemic. We can all agree to this. But in the darkest of times, our great and omniscient Lord has the uncanny ability to shine the most brilliant light on areas of grave importance. Never has it been more important for us as individuals and as a nation to begin living our lives on purpose — capitalizing on the precious ‘time’ we do have. Doing what we’re supposed to be doing and living how God has asked us to live. Maybe this “quarantine time” will entice us to dust off our Bibles and learn (or re-learn) God’s crucial instructions for living the lives we’ve been called to live. Maybe we’ll begin carving out time to talk with God; to intercede in prayer for others—the sick, the elderly, incarcerated, widowed, homeless, abandoned, those worried about paying their bills—instead of only ourselves.
Who knows, maybe this time of global uncertainty isn’t all bad. Maybe this is a set-up for a rebirth—a global renewal. A re-structuring of old habits and new perspectives. Maybe this is all much bigger and more intricate than we could possibly fathom. And who knows, maybe when we finally emerge from our homes again, we’ll be better and stronger than we were before.
With God, all things are possible. -Matthew 19:23