I was thinking today about the start of the year. We were all excited to start a new decade and were fascinated with the significance of the number 20/20.It is 2020 and it’s not how we imagined it would be. We started off talking about vision, 20/20 perfect vision and this year is not what we would call perfect. We have talked about community and we’re getting ready to talk about resilience and I think it actually somehow all goes really well together. We might have started the year thinking about perfect vision but I believe that COVID-19 has taught us about correcting our vision. We have had to readjust our lives as we’ve known them.
We each had different communities and many of those have been forced to disperse. COVID-19 changed the way we thought about community and how we’ve lacked it in our mandatory and voluntary isolation. We have had to get creative in our pursuit for connections. I thank God for the technology that we can still communicate and virtually see each other. Virtually I could bond with other mom’s who also hate second grade reading comprehension worksheets, virtually have a conference that was attended by women all over the country, virtually make connections with people I didn’t really know because we found the bond of connecting with a similar vision.
This time of forcing us to stop and evaluate what is important to us. What was worth leaving the house for? What is not essential in our lives? I think this has been a time when people have looked at the broken mess we find ourselves in and are seeking God in a new way, a vision correction of sorts. God is the only constant we have. Church buildings were shut down, but technology allowed us to bring the gospel message into our homes. Messages of hope and songs of worship have come out in abundance. People who may not have considered darkening the door of a church, through social media, were exposed to truths they wouldn’t have heard otherwise.
Of course I am ready for this to pass. I want to be able to go out without the heightened sense of uneasiness. I don’t want to have to wear a mask to go out in public. But, I also don’t want the world to go back to its self-reliance and sense of invincible power. I don’t want to get stuck in the rat race of keeping up with every expectation that comes along.
As we move forward I pray that we do so with optimism instead of fear, that we come together as a community rather than fight about things that are trivial, and that we “press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:14).
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off every encumbrance and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with endurance the race set out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
Let us fix our eyes on Jesus so that we can see clearly as we continue on our journey through this life.
By Erin Miller