We are living in an uncommon time. Most of us are sheltering in our homes and having minimal human contact with folks other than our family members. It’s been a long and challenging few months, filled with the emotions of fear, isolation, and frustration, and yet also filled with wonder, creativity, and love.
The Covid-19 pandemic has offered the global community an opportunity to get some profound answers to questions we may not have stopped to ask. Questions like: What would I do if I had more time? What is most important to me? And how can I love my fellow human beings more? This pandemic has given the majority of us more time, made us more aware of our mortality, and challenged us to do a few simple things to protect the health of our loved ones, and of people we don’t even know. Those on the front lines may not have more time on their hands, but I believe the last two questions are answered daily through their selfless actions.
In the early days of the lock-down, I found myself checking the news and the virus data daily as I tried to make sense of it all. Thankfully, I soon realized that I was being given an opportunity to let go of busyness and worry and make MY home a sanctuary. This is a formative time in my spiritual life. It is rich with prayer and meditation, sometimes flooded with grief, but always full of the feeling of sanctuary, shelter in the spiritual life, shelter in the Divine.
The spiritual life is often referred to as a path. I sometimes imagine it as a winding track leading over time from thick, dark woods, to an encounter with a stream of grace that leads us to a cerulean blue sea, where it is hard to discern the dividing line between heaven and earth.
This pandemic time finds us all in the deep, dark woods, looking for that stream of grace. Yet this stream is trickling right beside each of us in every moment. Grace appears as a neighbor dropping off some fresh vegetables with a post-it note saying, “these are virus-free.” Grace appears as friends in cars, driving by, honking loudly, to wish you a happy birthday, or to celebrate a high-school graduate. Grace appears as a woman offering free masks at the post office, it is senior hours at the local store, and it is you at the sink, washing your hands to protect your household. This pandemic is a call to love that I believe we are answering.
As we come near the possibility of relaxed restrictions of the SIP order, let’s stop for a moment and ask again: What is most important to me? How can I love more?
Let us be mindful of the impact we have on one another and our planet. Let us not return to what was, but make a new world where we ask these questions in each sacred moment.
May all people be healthy, may all people be love.
Until next time,