I wasn't planning to write a post about COVID.
*smiles* But here goes. Because this is my prayer, my fear, the hope I keep reminding myself of, and what I'm living for.
I don't want a new normal.
We don't need a new normal.
God is writing new stories, and I love them.
I love the way He pulls the carpet out from under us by closing cities, locking us in our homes, and making us stop. I love it because when we fall, we remember.
We write letters to old friends we miss. We video chat, have real conversations. We sit around the family table and are all together. We play games, raise our faces towards the sunshine, and actually live life instead of running through it.
We pray more. We love more.
I hurt too; I hurt for the nursing homes where people suffer and live alone, sick. I hurt for families with parents in the hospital, young adults who struggle for every breath, people scared and lonely and hurting. I hurt for graduates without celebrations, weddings postponed, beautiful occasions passing by alone. All this is not God's heart, not the way He desires life to be. But it happened.
Yet even so, there is beauty, incredible beauty.
Quarantine brought me on long walks. I planted tiny seeds, watched them bud into sprigs of green. I gathered with the family to listen to audiobooks, groaning at cliff hangers, and trying to guess what would happen yet. I saw sunshine and rainbows and baby animals and spring flowers. I stared at stars, glimpsed the first fireflies.
But things are changing. Stores are opening. Churches having services. Friends meeting. Running shoes put on for this race to continue once again.
We'll go back to work. We'll visit again, we'll sing.
But we don't need a "new normal."
The last normal was broken. Many of us were too busy, too distracted. We lived crazy lives and forgot to savor the little moments.
I want life to change. I want history books to write that COVID altered a lot—and we stepped up and lived in a new way.
We loved more. We realized the beauty and stories of every single person. We took time to be still and know that He is God. We surrendered to Him, let Him guide our lives completely. We sang, rejoiced, went to work with a smile, and did school with joy.
Where we didn't just go to church, but we became the Church. We didn't just pray and read and memorize and give more, but we let Him be the center focus of our life where everything revolved around Jesus.
I want our generation to stand up, to realize that we were created for such a time as this, to dance and sing in Jesus' glory, and yet to fight the enemy with fierce determination because we know who we are in Jesus.
And, in all, to live in the quiet place where we know Jesus intimately, love Him completely, and see life through His eyes.
Be still and know that He is God.
But it's not just for us, for this country; it's for me.
I will seek Jesus. I will rest in Him. I will know who I am in Him, Who He is, and how that changes everything.
And I'll praise!
I'm not looking for a new normal, not wanting to keep running and living old stories. Let's write new ones. Let's live the way we've always known we should, seek the dreams He has given us, and rest.
Let's rise up as the Church.
God is writing new stories; I want to be part of them.
That means I'm getting on my knees. I'm setting apart time. I'm worshiping and remembering who I am and Who He is.
And it's beautiful.
Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts... humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.
Create in me a clean heart, O God,And renew a steadfast spirit within me.Do not cast me away from Your presence,And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.