"I am guiding you on the way of wisdom and I am leading you on the right path." Proverbs 4:11

Category: covid19 Journal

covid-19 journal: spring snow

I grieve the losses small business in my town are taking

The life altering changes college students are facing

The doctors and nurses and grocery workers and the sacrifices they are daily making

Yet

When the spring snow comes

And 2 boys make plans, calculating their school assignments and class requirements.  Fill me in on the way the timing will work, the supplies they need, the adjustment to meals they’d prefer (we want to work till dark, then we’ll come in and eat dinner, we’ll start first thing in the morning and work on school at noon)

And they go out and build an igloo in this perfectly packable 8” of snow?

Oh the joy!

Had we been operating according to our regularly scheduled programming, today would have looked more like a conversation in the car wondering if the snow will still be there when the school day ended.

In Colorado, it hits like a train wreck, but clears away much faster.

but we have been forced home, paving the way for today’s igloo building by 2 brothers soon to be leaving the nest.  All the words about all the plans, the engineering decisions, the explanations; “wow zeke that’s brilliant!”, instead of mere imaginations of what could be if the sun could hide some of her strength, are actual reality!

And I wonder

After this is all over

Will we all return to the way things were?  Will we have learned and grown more balanced?  Will we value relationships over productivity?  Will we understand the lifelong benefits of bonding experiences? Will we be open to them when they come, willing to flex and disappoint the powers that be for what really matters in the right now? 

These are the questions I ask myself. I lean towards duty bound, loyalty, integrity and strong work ethic.  These things are valuable-essentials.  Yesterday morning was a duty morning of boys shoveling when they’d rather be warm and still in bed.  It’s not an abandoning of that I’m questioning.  It’s walking in the nuanced balance of the Holy Spirit who gives strength for the drudgery hard work, and courage for the invited play. 

This virus has stretched us all, but when the rubber band snaps back, will we take on our former form, or will our shape have changed from the stretching? 

will I remember this day, and have the courage to cancel school myself and allow these boys to stay home and play?  The consequences would be steep-for one at the community college and the other well into his high school NHS career. 

Would a teacher at the high school have freedom to take the students outside and have a lesson in igloo building because the materials have fallen at his door and won’t last till tomorrow? Would that courageous decision bear more impact than anything he does all year?  Would those students remember that day and the lessons they learned for the rest of their lives? 

Could that be the new normal we aspire to?  A new flexibility. Permission to be human?  Valuing the immense learning, bonding, health in perceived play? 

It’s hard to say, and is yet another thing out of my control. 

But what is in my control is today-to observe, to receive the joy in what has been given to us in the midst of the hard. to write it all down. 

A spring snow in the time of corona

covid-19 journal: Repent?

There is a lot of noise mulling around us during this pandemic -so much noise. there are some calling for repentance, still others calling that hateful, Love being the word for these days.

i struggle to understand the contrast.

Are not we guilty of so so many wrongs?  wrongs done to our bodies, wrongs done to our world, wrongs done to each other?

Yes, why yes we are. quite guilty.

Does God love us?

Yes, why yes He does. quite a lot in fact.

Why is it that while we know how much in this world is not as it ought to be,  we are so easily offended by the proposal of repentance?

The real and actual truth is we can’t possibly know why this pandemic has come at this particular time in history. nor the tornadoes, the floods, the snow storms.

But we can allow the pandemic along with all the rest to make known to us what it can reveal.

And if we are willing to look head on, into what we are being invited to see-we can be changed.  relationships can be healed.  the earth can be healed. our hearts can be healed.

seeing…

the idols we’ve built up that are now crumbling can turn our hearts back towards the One who alone satisfies.

the places of safety we’ve depended on that are now whisps in the wind can turn our trust back to the One who is solid

the self-sustaining provisions we’ve prided ourselves with that have been ripped out of our hands can turn our identities back to the One who loves to be known through how He provides.

Our worlds of sports, entertainment, and education have been completely upended. 

Our blue collar workers, doctors, nurses, grocery store stockers, farmers, pharmacists-these are our new heroes….

….that is until we run out of toilet paperwe are a fickle people after all.

Our futures are completely uncertain, and we are faced with having no control.

Jesus entered Jerusalem to the waving of palm branches.  The shouts turned to crucify and all seemed lost. He exited Jerusalem in a resurrected body, turning the entire world upside down.

His message; “repent, for the Kingdom of heaven is at hand.” -It means so much more than one would think.

we are people who are prone to wander, who worship ourselves-again and again and again. But we can also be people who turn back, who repent, who remember to live in the strong and unshakable kingdom of God.

When times are good, and when times are horrible, this is the Spriit’s whisper to us all;

This is what the Sovereign Lord, the Holy One of Israel, says: “In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength, but you would have none of it….” The amplified says it this way; “In returning [to Me] and resting you will be saved….” echoing this call, Jesus invites: Come unto Me, and I will give you the rest you seek.

The invitation to repent: to turn back: to re-turn: to the Only One who can satisfy all we hunger for-it is the most loving invitation we will ever receive.  We must release our grip on temporary things-so our hands can be filled with what cannot be taken.

may we all embrace the repentance being personally called forth from us and by it receive the very Life Jesus promises is available in abundance.  may the path of repentance not turn us away, but draw us closer and closer to the One who is worthy.

But whatever former things were gains to me [as I thought then], these things [once regarded as advancements in merit] I have come to consider as loss [absolutely worthless] for the sake of Christ [and the purpose which He has given my life]. But more than that, I count everything as loss compared to the priceless privilege and supreme advantage of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord [and of growing more deeply and thoroughly acquainted with Him—a joy unequaled].


Isaiah 30, Matthew 11, Philippians 3

covid-19 journal: Fear

on the tail end of some very full weeks, while the world is in its beginning stages of talk of this covid virus, we find ourselves seeking rest and refreshment in the mountains during our planned spring break. 

mere days before we loaded up our truck and headed for the hills we learned of beginning measures against a new and unknown threat- canceling school an extra week, canceling church services and gatherings of more than 100.  our trek to the mountains is to our own cabin, so we keep our plans.  for now, we will rest.

and for the first few days it is great rest.  we talk a little about the unknown virus, about adjustments of school and wondering what that all means, but we don’t feel anxious or afraid about any of it.

not because we are such faithful people who never are afraid.  mostly because the adjustments at this point really aren’t so bad. an extra week off of school and delayed start to baseball season?  ok, we can handle that. 

and so we build puzzles and play catan and read books by the fire.

and then the clouds roll in.  this is Colorado in the spring-our snowiest season.  this particular storm brings 12-16” of snow.  the sun covers herself in a blanket of cloud and fog envelops the cabin.  our truck is stuck in the deep drifts.  our solar panels are out there unseen and alone-unable to bring us power from a hidden sun.

this is when the fear; real, physical and tangible, sets in.  awakening in a cold cold cabin, wondering-will we run out of firewood?  will we run out of food or water?  are we really prepared for as long as this will take? 

it is all completely out of our control.  the storm could pass in a day or 2 and we will be fine.  or it could linger longer than we knew to plan for. 

the boys, however, are delighted.  they bundle up and spend hours upon days building sledding paths, tobogganing, sledding, snowboarding.  they come in for food and then head back out.  they declare these are the best days ever!  they have no idea of the worries we carry-the work to keep the fire fed, the power consumption low, conserve the water.  they have no thought that there is anything amiss-even when we explain the need for good stewardship of our resources-they shrug in agreement, cease in leaving the door open letting out the heat, and return to their play.

as I watch their freedom in the midst of the storm i’m struck with their utter trust in my husband and i to be capable of taking care of things and keeping them safe. 

wrapped in that cloud, deep calls unto deep as the Spirit directs His whisper to my pounding heart;

where is my trust in the actual One who is capable?  The One who has control over the sun and wind and waves?  Can i, in the unknown days ahead, entrust myself to His capable hands? will i be mindful of not leaving the doors open, yet with a heart at peace and free to experience the joy still available in the storm?

the pounding subsides, i turn and bank up the fire, receiving the peace His correction ushers in.

i see exhortation for what it is. an invitation to walk these days ahead, wise and mindful yes, but with peace and childlike trust in the One who numbers my days and is with me in the storm.

may the One who knows our bents, enable us to trust in Him one step, one storm, at a time.

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