It has been about 24 days since I last left the house. Same for the kids. That’s a long time. You would think in that time I would have paused and thought deep thoughts, or come up with some rhythm and plan for these days. You would think I would have things to say. Deep truths that have come clear in this time.
Not so much.
Here’s a bit of what 24 days in stay-at-home has looked like.
There are no appointments. No performances. No gatherings or parties or driving the kids to and from friends’ houses. I have to say it breaks my heart not to see Sam play soccer.
No communal worship.
This is a completely unique time for us. This forced stopping. Forced pause. Forced waiting.
I have to admit, I am not good at being still. But it is beginning to seep in a little.
I have been on silent retreats before, and usually just before it is time to leave is when my mind and my soul begin to quiet. There is just so much noise. And now, that noise is spurred on by news that updates us by the moment about the spread of this virus. We hear and see not only the fear and the stress, but the resilience of people singing to each other from balconies or parading through neighborhoods to celebrate birthdays. Or just to acknowledge each other.
We have the chance, though…we have a moment to pause and to pull back and to rest.
It has taken me 24 ish days to settle in to this, to press toward whatever this is and what God has to teach me in this season. My mind is starting to quiet.
This safer-at-home business is messy. We are all stuck together and trying to finish school well, and trying to stay connected to friends and be aware of what is happening in the world. This is a totally unique time. There are so many wonderful stories coming to the surface, balancing the fear and the anxiety. There are so many good moments…and yet there are so many struggling and that will increase.
Easter is coming and with it the declaration that God has overcome. The declaration that all will be well. We may not be able to sing it out together in community, but we have the opportunity to speak it out in hope. The opportunity to speak life in social media and in conversation. We have the moment to turn our attention to the reality of God.
I have not been turning my face toward Easter. I’ve not done well with Lenten discipline. I’ve been distracted and unsettled. The other day it was 1pm and I realized none of my children were awake. There was no rhythm or intention.
We still have a week, though. We have time to quiet some more. We have time to be intentional and to lean in to the reality of God risen from the dead.
Quieting. Listening. Knowing that this is a different season and the Easter message will resonate in a whole new way. Praying for mercy for our world, for grace in this strange time, and for healing. And waiting. Waiting with a new longing for that Easter morning and the rejoicing there will be….