“O Lord, my heart is not lifted up; my eyes are not raised too high; I do not occupy myself with things too great and too marvelous for me. But I have calmed and quieted my soul, like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child is my soul within me. O Israel, hope in the Lord from this time forth and forevermore.” Psalm 131
John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist movement would ask those within the small groups he formed to help people with their discipleship, “How is it with your soul?” So, today I am asking you: How is it with your soul?
In the midst of this pandemic, as we in Florida are beginning phase one of reopening, are you calm? Are you looking forward to carving out a new life post-pandemic? Or are you scared? Are you worried about how you will recoup losses and re-engage with the world around you? Is your soul calm and quiet or does it feel frantic and filled with chaos?
We live in times that are uncertain at best. But reality…history even…tells us we have been here before. There have been other times that life was uncertain due to war, disease, and economic upheaval. We have lived through those times and we will live through this one as well. But life will look different. How? I honestly don’t know. I think the answer to that question will depend on how you respond to the effects of this virus. Will we trust in God that all will be well? Will we try to fix everything on our own? Will we retreat into our homes, fearful of going out ever again? Will we brave this new world and still try to experience all life has to offer? How will you respond?
I have read many times through many sources that “we are all in the same boat.” I think we may all be in the same ocean but our boats are definitely different! For some of us, we will go back to life as usual. In fact, for some of us, life didn’t change all that much. A few alterations here in there on what we did and how we did things but for the most part life continued with no real changes. For others, jobs were lost, major life activities were canceled like graduations, weddings, proms and more. We had to learn how to home school children from platforms we are not familiar with. People had to stay home to keep them safe from the virus but they live in homes that are not safe from abuse. Their schools or their jobs were their safe spaces. Many lost loved ones, some to the virus and some to other causes, but all could not celebrate the lives lost with memorial services. Our emotions may be all over the map. Grief may have become a constant companion and will need to be dealt with. We are definitely not in the same boats as we will all respond differently to what our experiences of the corona virus has been and will be.
So, my prayer for all today is that we will ask for help when we need it for any reason. We will continue to work one day at a time getting at least one small chore done…even if it is just brushing our teeth. We will continue to help others. We will not be arrogant enough to think we can fix this overnight but will in time come though this hopefully better people living in a better society. My prayer is that we will be more like the psalmist who wrote with a heart that was not lifted up or eyes raised too high: a stance of humility as we rebuild what has been lost.
And so I ask the question: How is it with your soul?