It is rather unsettling to go out in public place these days. People have become a lot more observant of where they are. People might know what are the right things to do and yet are afraid of not doing it right. Every human being can pose a threat and there is an easy feeling all around. It is like walking among zombies. It is no longer a pleasure to go grocery shopping and take our time to look around (assuming that grocery shopping is a pleasure). Now it is a “mission” to get it done well, completely, quickly and safely.
As we are going through this, there are a few major struggles we need to acknowledge because they impact our faith in the goodness of God.
We feel insecure. The absence of “normalcy” is the cause of our insecurity. Simple things seem to be either impossible or enduring. Normal social life seems to impossible. Maybe we have taken many simple things in life for granted. Our framework of life has been altered drastically and we are faced with helplessness. That should be the beginning of our new steps toward faith.
We become more fearful. We listen to the news and that brings more fear. We talk to one another and that doesn’t diminish our fear either. Some begin to doubt the official reports about the situation and that brings about some other forms of fear. Sometimes the desperation in dealing with fear makes some of us become careless. Having faith in God might not be a bad idea when we are starring at our fear.
Many people have suffered tremendously because of this pandemic. Some lost their loved ones. Some are seriously sick. Some work tirelessly to take care of others. Some cannot provide care for their elderly parents. Some suffer from depression. Some no longer have work. Some cannot work because of their family situation. Suffering is not something Jesus cannot identify with us. It might be helpful for us to know that Jesus suffers with us in all human suffering and that is another step of faith.
There is plenty of disappointment during time like this. Disappointment tends to facilitate blames. Some blame themselves for the death and the suffering of their elderly parents. Some blame the authority for either not doing enough or overacting. Some blame foreign powers. Some blame people with another racial history. Some might become disappointed with God. Believe it or not, being disappointed with God is actually a healthy sign of faith. We would not be disappointed at somebody we have no relationship with.
Asking for help in hard time forces us to encounter our own misplaced pride. Sometimes it is good to tell someone that we need help. This is not a sign of weakness. It is a sign of courage. Physical distancing should not destroy our need for community. God creates us to be in community. It is healing to be served and it is even more healing to allow others to serve us. That is how we learn to trust. That is a significant step in having faith.
Psalm 46:1-3: “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with me their surging.”