When everyday changes and nothing feels secure and no can give you answers it is easy to draw in, to think of yourself and be afraid, panicked even. All these feelings I have been feeling remind me of the weeks I sat in the CCCU waiting room not knowing what was going to happen with Joshua, would he live or die? Would our lives ever be the same again? Would we ever recover from it? Would anything ever be or at least feel normal again? I have had a hard time understanding what I have been feeling the last week and a half, struggling to understand the underlying pain and confusion and lack of control but yesterday I realized it for what it was and for the first time in a week I felt the water level lower to a point that I wasn’t feeling like I would drown. This feeling we have, the lack of control, the struggle to understand, the chaos we feel ourselves stuck in and the frustration we feel that there are no answers, no clear end in sight… I have been here before, I have been here and I can attest to that fact that God is here, he’s with us, he is in control and this too will be redeemed and this too will have beautiful things happen in the midst of it.
I hate it, I know how frustrating and awful it is. There is nothing more painful than sitting in the fear and unknown and not know what to do to make anything better. We are are watching a virus sweep through the world, stealing our parents and grandparents, mothers, daughter, fathers, sons, friends and neighbours and it is scary. We are sitting in front of the TV or computer watching the news waiting for someone, anyone to give us answers. We are worried about the financial implications of this for the world and for ourselves. We have no answers and we have no control and there ‘s nothing more human than being worried and anxious about that lack of control. Yet, I know that we will get through this. We will have moments of reprieve, moments of joy and laughter and a lot of tears and anger and frustration. We are after all, human and we will do what is naturally human. BUT, this is what I learned in the CCCU waiting room. God is not a God of chaos, that isn’t what he is about. He restores order, he works to redeem. It is him who is inspiring the beauty you see in the ashes, it’s his hand at work in the first responders who are sacrificing to help others, it is his comfort that you see when you are contacted by a friend and loved one just to say hi. He is here, sitting with us, helping us, comforting us and he is even now working to redeem this mess.
I have been struggling to know what to say in a blog post about this pandemic, I have been scared, I have been worried about food shortages, I have been anxious about our finances, I have been worried about my kids who are higher risk, terrified for my parents who are very high risk, worried about Tim who is trying to hold it all together for the church, to keep things going so that the community will have at least one thing that is has some semblance of normalcy. I worry about the boys’ educations and health and social lives and just when I feel like I am not going to be able to ever breathe normally again I am reminded of before, the days when I begged the doctors for answers that they didn’t have, the time when we were given a crutial decision that could either take Joshua from us or save his life, we didn’t know what to do so we asked God to make that call, to make the final decision for us. I believe that is where we are as a world community now, there are no real answers. There are a lot of bandaid fixes, people are doing their best but no one really knows what to do for sure, no one knows when this ends, or how it ends. It’s time for us to give it to God. It is time to turn to him and see what he is already doing, time to do what we can for our neighbours, time to lay the anxiety at the cross and pray diligently for the future. It is not easy, the tightness in my gut and shoulders tells me I am still fighting it despite what I am saying and yet I know that sometimes we have to do what isn’t natural to us before things really change.
We need to pull ourselves together, work together, not just as neighbours or citizens of the same country, or the same political group, we have to stand side by side with our world neighbours and work together, leading each other through this, loving each other through this. What comes of this is not just up to God but also us, how we respond, how we help, how we show compassion, love, patience, generosity, hope. It is time to put aside politics, economy, race, religion, and gender and time to step up in love. It’s time to stop using social media to denigrate people and instead use it to reach out and speak to those in isolation, time to spread love and not hate, time to protect, not just ourselves and our borders but life in general. Be really PRO LIFE and step up for the people in the world who came before us, who raised us, who took care of us, who taught us, who funded us and who protected us when we couldn’t.
I wish I had simple, easy, clear answers for you. Sadly I don’t and probably never will. I will continue to be praying for all of us. For you and for your loved ones and I ask you to pray for me and the people that I love. We are in this together and I promise you we are NOT alone. God’s here in the worst of it and he cares very very much.