April 16, 2020 | By neighborhoodev

Seeing Beauty in Uncertain Times

In my 37 years of being on this earth I’ve never experienced a pandemic like the one that we are in. Pandemics always happened in other countries where there is limited access to clean water, or where food is not properly regulated. To be honest we are not used to experiencing things like this.

How do we navigate fear? How do we navigate faith? it is very important for us to acknowledge that this is a dangerous time. I’m reminded of the story in the Bible where Jesus and his friends were crossing over a body of water in which a dangerous storm came upon them. The Bible actually says that a dangerous storm was occurring. In the midst of the storm Jesus was taking a nap in the bottom of the boat. The disciples woke Jesus up to tell him that there was a dangerous storm and Jesus proceeded to tell the wind and the waves to stop and calm down and they listened. The disciples were in awe of what just happened as Jesus looked at them and asked this question, “where is your faith?”

I think that there is wisdom to acknowledge that something is dangerous while not focusing on the danger itself. To focus completely on the storm will hinder our ability to focus on the one who has control over the storm or who can help us in storm. This pandemic that we are facing is a lot like the storm that the disciples went through being both dangerous and scary. To focus on the news or the pandemic itself leaves us in a place of fear with little hope or peace during this time. I believe Jesus wants to ask us the same question that he asked his friends on the boat, “where is your faith?”

This is the time where we must acknowledge two things: we must acknowledge that there are people who are hurting as a result of this pandemic, from those who have been affected by the virus to local business owners. We must also acknowledge that God is trying to teach us something valuable in the midst of this. I did not say that God caused this, rather that he wants to teach us something during this “storm”. What a great opportunity to reach out to hurting people and show them the love of God that they are not forgotten during this period. Whether that’s supporting small businesses, making grocery store runs for the elderly, checking on vulnerable neighborhoods to make sure they have everything they need, or starting your own food drive for the less fortunate. It is also a great opportunity to breathe, to embrace the fact that we need rest, we are meant to look after our neighbors, and that there’s beauty in slowing down during this time to reset our priorities.

I’ll leave you with this: “But he’s already made it plain how to live, what to do, what GOD is looking for in men and women. It’s quite simple: Do what is fair and just to your neighbor, be compassionate and loyal in your love, And don’t take yourself too seriously— take God seriously.” Micah 6:8 MSG

Josh Meadows