We are now more than two years into the Covid-19 pandemic. As I write this, there have been more than 368 million cases reported world-wide and 5.6 million deaths, with the actual numbers likely being much higher. Our lives have been turned upside-down: we contract the virus, suffer with mild to serious symptoms, some of us die, some recover quickly, and some of us face lingering and serious side effects. Huge medical bills accrue, and our social, work, and worship lives continue to be disrupted.
One of the very worst things about the pandemic, though, is more insidious. The forced (and voluntary) isolation has taken quite a toll on all of us. Worst yet, for many of us a sense of resignation and discouragement has crept into our everyday lives. Our daily routines and habits have gradually regressed and don’t seem to be worth the effort. I am afraid that we are settling for a lesser quality of life, and that is a shame.
Can we overcome this tendency? I believe we can. The Apostle Paul, in 1 Cor. 9: 24-27 wrote: Don’t you know that the runners in a stadium all race, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way to win the prize. Now everyone who competes exercises self-control in everything. However, they do it to receive a crown that will fade away, but we do it to receive a crown that will never fade away. Therefore I do not run like one who runs aimlessly or box like one beating the air. Instead, I discipline my body and bring it under strict control, so that after preaching to others, I myself will not be disqualified.
Can it be that the discipline Paul desires for himself and all believers needs to show up in our everyday lives? The pandemic has created some limitations in how we can live our everyday lives, but perhaps it’s time to decide what are the things we can still do. We might have to be a little creative, but…
We can still find a way to exercise. We can still find ways to stay in touch with friends and family. We can maintain or even strengthen our Christian walk. We can dig deeper into a hobby or find a new one.
Our upcoming Scaling the Summit, called Taking Root, will be a great opportunity for each of us to relaunch. Our prayer and fervent desire are that 100% of us will accept our invitation to participate in this church-wide time of enhanced fellowship and growth.
The pandemic does not have to win!