This morning, like every morning I had my “On This Day” memories flow through my social media timeline.
4- years ago on this day my late husband caught a 7lb bass. He had me follow him out to our tackle shed as he posed, grinning ear to ear, showing off his catch. I would have been pregnant at this time… big and pregnant.
This same picture cuts a place deep in my soul—It was a picture used during the 5-day search for him in 2017. It’s a beautiful picture. It’s a sad picture. It’s a joyful picture. It’s a picture that reminds me of what is truly important in this life.
With the world in a craze hysteria over the Covid-19 outbreak, my emotions are wrecked. Not in fear, but I am being reminded of emotions tied to trauma and loss. The feeling of not being in control. The feeling of your whole world being turned upside down in the blink of an eye. The feeling of losing something or someone you hold so dear to your heart. None of that is in our control. This sickness is not in our control. The way others react to this virus or any code red situation is not in our control. What we can control is what we allow our minds to concentrate on. We can control how much we allow the media to penetrate our minds and emotions. No amount of fear will render aid to this virus, or any health concern for that matter. What does fear do? Fear creates mass hysteria. Fear creates empty shelves in the grocery store. Fear creates a shortage of the good stuff on a roll—toilet paper. (For the life of me I still do not understand why this is what is being bought in mass?) Fear does nothing positive or edifying to our spirits.
Do you see what happened in such a short time? People’s plans were cancelled. People’s agendas were halted. People can no longer stroll through the store without worry of essential items being bought out. Businesses are closing, schools are shutting down. No one has an answer to what is going to happen next. People that die today had plans for tomorrow. We all have plans and agendas. It’s okay if those plans and agendas look differently now. It’s okay that our lives are almost being forced to slow down. If we’re all honest, I bet it is much needed, mentally, physically and most importantly spiritually.
Time is one of the only things we can never get back once it’s gone. I don’t know about you, but through this mandated human distancing process- I am going to take advantage of this time and spend as much of it as I can with my 3 year old baby girl. If there is anything that tragedy and pandemics can teach us it’s that time is precious. Relationships with our loved ones is precious. Material things are not important. Climbing the corporate ladder for selfish reasons is not important. Being the next ‘Jones’ on the block is not important. I can go into my storage and see an entire section stacked with my late husbands things. Tools, some of it unused and brand-new, tool bags, fishing poles, man stuff… just things upon things. They’re here, but he’s not. When the end of my life comes I want to have a clear conscious knowing that I spent more time growing what truly matters; my faith, spending time with my child and loved ones, working hard at my job- but also not allowing my job to consume me as a person.
We’re all experiencing how fast our daily lives can change in the blink of an eye. I pray this virus is a short-lived epidemic. I pray our Communities, State, Nation and World find a way to cure its spread. But more importantly I pray that we can all embrace the goodness that still surrounds us. I pray people get in touch with the compassion still alive in each of our souls and extend help to the elderly, or the single mom who may seem overwhelmed with the new task of homeschooling. Ask the Lord to show you how you can be a blessing to someone else. If you’re not a person of faith then I ask that you be a light in some way to our dark world right now. Whether we believe differently spiritually, have different views politically or come from different ethnic backgrounds means nothing when we’re talking about basic human decency and being a positive asset in our individual communities. A song that came to mind as I was writing this blog is Mercy Me’s, In The Blink of an Eye:
You have a mission for me
You knew my name and You called it
Long before I learned to breathe
By the way I spend my time
How can I further Your kingdom
When I’m so wrapped up in mine
I’ll be closer to You than I’ve ever been
Time will fly, but until then
I’ll embrace every moment I’m given”
I am a strong believer in God. I know He is in control and sovereign. I know He is up to something big, bigger than all of our own personal agendas. As the above lyrics proclaim, He has put us here for a reason.
“Trust in him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge.” Psalm 62:8
“Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” Psalm 46:10
I Trust my God, I Trust my God, I Trust my God