Quarantine–from the Italian meaning forty. Hmm, how many days will be in quarantine here in the United States? Even thinking about 40 days home alone is difficult for me. I think about my family and friends who are in different configurations during these circumstances–couples, couples with small children, couples with elementary children, single parents responsible for children while working, families with both parents working and trying to still educate their children, parents learning to home school, families with no income because their small business or jobs are shut down–all requested to stay at home, in place. Then there are military spouses in deployment status trying to maintain normalcy for their families as well. What we all need to figure out is a new rhythm of grace.
Grace for each other, grace for ourselves and grace for our governments. The first day I was serious about “self-isolating” the Lord spoke to me about changing my routine. I usually would wake, grab my coffee and do my devotional time safe and comfy in my waterbed. He said, you need to get up, shower, dress and move your study to the living room. I admit, I really didn’t like it! But as we are in our second week, I’ve begun to see the wisdom of that change. It is my new rhythm and schedule that has set a better tone for my life during these changes. Matthew 11: 28-30 Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you”ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me–watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heacy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company iwth me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly. If you haven’t as yet–ask the Lord to help you find the rhythm of life for this new season. Give yourself the grace to have more conversations with your friends and family. I heard the other day that phone calls–are up an actual 33%. If you are alone–wondering about your friends and family–pick up the phone and call them. You may need keep it short, but it’s important for both sides of the family. I’ve found when you live alone it’s hard sometime to get outside your own thoughts–prayer definitely helps, but so does checking in with others. You might start by asking, “is this a good time to chat?” Then respond accordingly!
God gave us structure to our days with the rising of the sun its setting. He knows we do better with a schedule than without. Not necessarily a rigid one, but enough to follow His rhythm–which is always full of grace! The word tells us to “number” our days–this is one way to make the most of this unprecedented time. Throw in some fun! Add some surprises if you can! (I found some olives the other day–they added a bit of joy to my predictable meal!) Please know God is able to help us learn about Him during this season. We are learning about ourselves as well–things that may frustrate us, disappoint us–but don’t just look for the negative, look at the positive! How creative are you? We were made in the image of our creative God–ask Him for His creativity to change up the routine as well…once you have it established! Don’t forget to laugh, forgive and enjoy the people around you. This time will pass–sooner than we know. Make memories as you can.