Thought for the week - 2 August 2020
Published on Saturday, 8 August 2020 00:00
Isaiah 55: 1-5
Psalm 145: 8-9, 15-end
Romans 9: 1-5
Matthew 14: 13-21
your Son left the riches of heaven
and became poor for our sake:
when we prosper save us from pride,
when we are needy save us from despair,
that we may trust in you alone;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Reflection - Coming Out of Lockdown
By the beginning of this week, life (at least in most of parts of UK) will seem to be returning to normal, following the government’s decision to reopen restaurants, gyms, swimming pools and other businesses across the country. Most workers that have been working from home for the better part of the last four months will be able to return back to the office from August. Life is indeed returning to normal, but we need to have the right understanding of what that “normal life” means for each us given what we have experienced in the lockdown. Will “normal life” mean returning to the old ways of thinking and doing things or will it mean carefully reflecting on what we have learnt over the past four months and choosing to live our “normal life” in a way that is radically different to how we lived prior to the pandemic.
In my conversations with various people, one of the areas of key concern is the busyness of life that somehow got taken away from us during the lockdown, but now that we have the freedom to be out and about (subject to government’s guidance on social distancing), we run the risk of cramming as many activities as possible into each day unless we carefully consider the things we dissipate our energies on going forward. Personally, I have been looking at those things that I have not done for the past four months and I have been asking myself how much of those I really need to be doing in the first instance – this will inform my choice of post lockdown activities.
One of the key highlights of the lockdown period is that a lot of things that we did were informed by intention. We went out of our way to appreciate key workers by clapping at 8pm every Thursdays, a lot of people were checking on elderly and vulnerable neighbours regularly, some were helping with groceries shopping. I don’t think there has been a time in the modern history when we have been more intentional in our living than the lockdown period. I hope that the virtue of intentional living that have been developed over this period will not be thrown away as we return to life beyond the lockdown.
As things begin to open up, it is also a good time to pause and reflect on what we are grateful for so that we may appreciate what truly matters. Isolation and lockdown have made us appreciate some things we previously have taken for granted; from hugs and kisses by loved ones to conversations and physical interaction with family, friends and work colleagues. We must continue to be appreciative more than ever the people that God has placed in our lives and must continue to cherish each moment that we are able to spend with them.
We are all coming out of the lockdown, but we must recognise and be sensitive that we are all coming out with different experiences, because coronavirus has created fear among people, some have lost loved ones, some are shattered, some turned hopeless, some jobless and have no idea how they are going to support themselves and their families. Consequently, we must not forget such people in our communities and must do all that lies in our power to support them at this difficult time – this is our duty as ambassadors of Jesus Christ.
Lastly, we must understand that the battle with coronavirus is not by any means won, hence we must continue to be careful by observing the social distance rules, wearing face mask where required and ensuring that we don’t put other people and ourselves at the risk of being infected with the virus as we go about living our lives in the new normal.