Hebrews 13:8 New Life Version (NLV)
8 Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
Shelter in place, stay at home, flatten the curve, pandemic are all terms of the new normal time we are living in. Respirator masks, face masks, quarantine, outbreaks…none of this was on my radar or in my mind, much before March 12 or 13th. The only worry and concern I had back then was what in the world were we as a family going to do to keep our autistic grandson entertained for a whole week while his school was on Spring Break. And we are still working to figure that out.
I was reading the other day that January 30, 2020 was when the WHO (World Health Organization) declared a Public Health Emergency of International Concern for the novel coronavirus,( named on February 20, 2020) Covid-19. And still I had no idea about any of this. Is it because it wasn’t affecting me so I just didn’t know or was it because it wasn’t prevalent here in the United States and I didn’t keep up on health happenings around the globe? Either way, had we known anymore about the Covid-19 strain, would any of us paid much attention to it, if it wasn’t as fatal as it has been??? I cannot answer that for anyone else, but for me, doubtful. I say doubtful, because I have had many respiratory illnesses in my time and always recovered and I have poor lung capacity and a chronic respiratory disorder I live with every single day.
I can honestly say, that I didn’t sit up and take notice, until I heard the word, Pandemic, then I was worried. Reaching pandemic status means it affects ALL of us. Not just people in China, where it is suspected the virus originated from, but every single human being on the planet. Reading news releases through the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) it appeared that even though there was significant data of community spread back in February 2020, it was thought to be a mild virus, mostly affecting the elderly or others with compromised immunity systems, but from what I read, and believe to understand, it wasn’t something so bad, that thousands of people would end up dying from it and are still dying. There is no cure right now. There are no vaccines. But we can slow down the spread of this virus and we can do it by simply washing our hands frequently throughout the day, stop touching your face with dirty hands, stay home and shelter in place; only take essential trips to the store for food and necessities, once a week, not daily. Do not meet with anyone other than your family. Sanitize surfaces. Take this seriously. Listen to Public Health Officials. You don’t have to like it. But you do need to do it.
I rarely, speak out about any issues that are in the news because personally, politics are not my thing. I could care less if you are a republican or democrat or part of a liberal party. I don’t care who you support for any office. One of my goals in life, is to love like Jesus tells us to love, regardless if I agree with anyone or not. That is what I am called to do and now I must do it from a safe distance. This part is challenging to my very being, but I am doing it because I want to be able to be around to love others for a very long time. I can’t take any chances. In the past four weeks, I have been out three times. Yes, you read that right 3 times. I saw my mom and sister briefly. I moved to a new place. I went to the bank ATM in the wee early morning hours, wearing latex gloves, to do some banking transactions. I have a weakened immune system and prior to Covid-19, I was susceptible to getting a handful of respiratory illnesses that I might get because I was around someone that was sick or if I was too run down and didn’t get the proper rest. I can’t risk getting this coronavirus, even a mild case of it. Do I like staying home like this??Heck no, but we all have to do our part to “flatten the curve” and in my home state, Ohio, we are doing just that, but it is because we are following the guidelines set by our Governor and Medical Health Director.
Part of loving Jesus and living like Jesus, is we are taught to respect authority.
Romans 13:1 New Living Translation (NLT)
13 Everyone must submit to governing authorities. For all authority comes from God, and those in positions of authority have been placed there by God.
I am thankful for the technology in this day and age, as I can still attend church services and interact, from the safety of my laptop inside my home. No it isn’t the same as being there in person. I am a person that loves to hug others and get hugs back, so this is hard. Just waving to someone during a virtual meeting doesn’t have the same effect as a long lasting hug does, but one day we will get back to those, I hope. We can still reach out and pray for one another, laugh with one another and cry with one another. I think the saddest thing I have seen so far and is so hard to imagine or know about, is because of the spread of this virus and not knowing how to stop it, people are dying alone. Spouses can’t be with their partners because of spreading the virus. Families can’t go to the hospital and sit with loved ones. I think that has to be the loneliest way to die. No one, should have to die alone, cordoned off from the rest of the world, but they are every day.
Navigating this new normal isn’t easy. It isn’t what many of us want,but it is what all of us need. One of the ways, my friends and I are coping is through doing Bible Devotionals together through an App. We are all able to read the devotional together and discuss it through the app, while growing our knowledge of the Lord and building one another up in Him. Encouraging each other.
Find what works for you and do it. Create a small group that can meet online together. Your group can decide what works best for seeing one another. My grandson’s teachers, and therapists are currently using Zoom and it is so easy to operate. Reach out through emails and phone calls. We can be isolated in our homes with our families, but we can still connect with others and one day, we will look back on this time in our lives and realize we are tougher than we imagine, and more resilient than we know. And we can still share Jesus and His gospel. We can still love like Jesus, just at a safe distance right now. And Jesus is with you every step of the way. His Holy Spirit lives within each believer. Cry out to Him. He is always available to you. He will always provide for all your needs. He loves you~now, as much as he loved you yesterday and into the future. His love never ends.
Jesus can take any mess in your life and turn it into a message. And any test you face can be turned into a testimony. #HopeAlwaysHaveFaith
Blessings until next time~Carlene