Unprecedented, unexpected, unwelcomed, unwanted, uncertain, challenging, confusing, frightening – some of the many words being used to describe our current reality.
The constantly changing information on the Covid 19 crisis reminds us, repeatedly, that we are dealing with something, the likes of which, we have never seen. Life has intervened in a way that we never expected. While we have seen our share of natural disasters and epidemics, for the most part they have not involved us directly. They have often been somewhere else, just not here. Where is hope to be found at a time like this when the reality does affect us directly?
Several thoughts have stayed with me these days.
- The first is that our experience of the Covid 19 situation began in late Lent into Easter.
What an appropriate metaphor on which to focus. The Sunday Gospel readings since Easter have shown us the disciples’ gradual understanding that Jesus meant what He said: that He would rise from the dead and redefine what had been the disciples’ reality up to that point. When they were able to overcome their fears, the disciples were able to move forward in hope and joy.
Perhaps the Easter message of hope and new life is an appropriate one to focus on in this time of confusion and fear.
- The second thought that has been running through my mind comes from the opening words of Psalm 121: “I lift my eyes to the mountains. From where shall come my help? My help shall come from the Lord.”
If I am not careful, times like these can drag me down. I have to make an extra effort to “lift up my eyes”, to surrender my anxiety to God and to trust that He will lead me as long as I willingly and freely accept that He is God, and I am not.
- The third thing that has struck me these days is more than a thought. It is simply having the time to observe nature.
Having more time at home has given me the opportunity to observe nature right in my own backyard. While I have experienced spring before, this year, for some reason, I have been paying more attention as trees bud and turn green and as flowers push their way through the earth. It is almost as if God is saying, “Pay attention. Watch. There is new life. There is promise. There is hope. It all depends on what you are looking at.”
- The English teacher in me can’t resist one last thought from the great American poet, Robert Frost:
“The best way out is always through.
Easy to say; harder to do, but rooted in the hope of Easter, may we soon find our way through.
This Monday Minute is from Brother Hank, currently listening to “Fall Apart” by Josh Wilson. Listen in at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uoafQWXEGis