The Coronavirus train roles on. Many of our behaviours have shifted – our work patterns, how we shop, sanitisation routines etc. There is so much information to digest. How does the disease spread? What are the latest guidelines? When will restrictions lift?
Changing your behaviours and thought patterns inevitably impacts your feelings. Many of us have been on an emotional roller coaster ride. It might have begun with fear or dismissing the fearful. Then came the helplessness when we feel we are no longer in control. This may result in panic (or panic buying). Put all these together and you get an underlying level of anxiety that rises. Mix in some blame – those NSW health officials messed up the Ruby Princess.
The feeling that I sense is now slowly overtaking all others is isolation.
Fittingly, the gospel speaks to all of this. The human heart is susceptible to certain diseases. The desire to be in control, to be like God, to trust ourselves and what we have stored up in our barns. To conceive plans in our minds, and then act them out – plans that come from, and are about self. Such behaviours and thoughts have consequences. Fear, greed, envy. Have I got enough? Have others got more? When resources are short, and we compete for them, others become our enemy, and we become isolated.
We were not created to be alone. It is not good. Jesus comes to overturn the tables of greed, self-trust, and enmity. His death defeats sin and its powers. His resurrection invites people out of isolation and into restored relationships. To participate as citizens of a different kingdom. One where loving God and serving others brings renewal.
Why not use some of your newfound solitude to contemplate what it means for Jesus to be your hope? How will life now, and the virus be different?
Rev David Rietveld
Download this week's Newsletter here.