I think all of us have been affected by the spread of the coronavirus in the last few weeks...Some more than others.
Our family has decided to take the advice of those with more knowledge than us on the Coronavirus and such things infectious disease related. So we're staying in as much as possible. As a result, I've realized there are some awesome lessons to be learned here in this entire experience. I've certainly been encouraged. I hope this will encourage you too.
1. There is a lot I take for granted.
I've never thought of going out on the weekend with my friends for dinner, or running errands to Target as a privilege. It's just part of my normal life. Errands never felt like something to be grateful for, but more of a chore.
Since we have been mostly inside for days, I realize how much I love and appreciate my normal schedules. I've complained about the routine of them many times. I've even felt stressed-out by them, but they really are something to be grateful for.
Many times, we under-appreciate things until it is taken away. I am really grateful for the freedom I experience on daily basis. Because this freedom is limited at this time, I don't think I'll ever take it for granted again.
2. Stocking-up is a privilege.
Everyone can't afford to stock-up on food and household items. Most people are just trying to make it day by day, week by week.
Having extra money to buy items for weeks ahead is a privilege. It's something I should be grateful for...not stressed-out by. I am not asking myself, worrying..."How we are going to eat over the next few weeks?" Anyone in that same position, should have a heart overwhelmed with gratefulness.
I am especially grateful to have more than enough for staying inside with my family for the next few weeks.
3. Unselfishness has a lot to do with it.
According to many reports on the disease, my family is healthy and has a lower risk of being affected by symptoms. We aren't elderly. We don't have pre-existing conditions. My family would most likely not die from the coronavirus. However, many people around us have that as a real risk.
Staying at home and practicing social distancing is more about caring for others above ourselves. We have cancelled trips and events we were really excited about. We had NBA tickets our family has been counting down to enjoy.
At the same time, we have decided to be less selfish and careless about the health of our country, our neighbors, and our friends. We want to do our part in not spreading this thing, since we could simply be carriers without showing the symptoms.
We want life to return to normal. If this means we need to relax at home for a few weeks, we can do our part and love those around us a little better.
4. Slowing down has so many benefits.
We have spent sooo much time together as a family during this time. I didn't realize how much we are on the go, and preoccupied.
We have had slow days, consisting of lots of great conversations, prayer together, eating delicious food, cooking together, lots of games, and time outdoors.
I've learned to appreciate the people in my home even more than I did before. We have connected more than we usually do, and it has been very gratifying.
This is what we need. With all the busyness of our modern culture, it's been a true blessing to slow down and just be with each other.
5. I have a false sense of control.
There's so much happening on a daily basis, I think I control, that I do not.
Stepping back to realize God is truly in control, and I can trust Him (even in the hard times) has been challenging and rewarding. It's easy saying "I trust in God..." when all is going perfect. These are the times when my faith is really tested to practice what I preach.
Realizing people can, and do, die every single day, from a multitude of causes, helps me have some peace. In this way, this threat isn't bigger or greater than any other threat. I have no control over life and death. These are inevitable, but I can trust God with all of it.
I can love my people whether things are perfect or challenging, like tomorrow is not promised. Whether sitting in our home, or busy in our normal schedules, the shortness of life is a GOOD thing to keep on your mind.
It helps you love better and live more intentionally. The Coronavirus has helped me do that.
I hope these 5 lessons will help you look at this time a little differently. Maybe you'll have more grace, peace and joy. We'll all get through this. We are all in this together!