During stormy seasons (like this current pandemic), it can be difficult to maintain hope.
We can be so blinded by the storms in our lives – sickness, job loss, financial crisis, failing a class, losing a loved one, etc. – that we forget the power, love, and mercy of God and we forget the goodness that can be found in humanity.
When life seems to be spiraling out of control, those of us who believe in God should remember that God is in control and is stronger than our problems and that God will give us the strength we need to get through the storm.
For those who may not believe in God or a higher power (and those who do), perhaps comfort and strength can be found in the goodness of humanity – the acts of kindness that we see every day (people shopping for those who are vulnerable; employers who are providing pay to employees who are sheltered in place; restaurant owners who are providing meals for the homeless and economically disadvantaged; neighbors who are checking on neighbors and sharing meals and supplies; athletes who are donating to food banks and childcare programs; healthcare heroes who are on the front line; grocery store and retail workers and custodial and cleaning staff who continue to serve, etc.).
A friend of mine, who is a pastor in California, recently shared a message with his parishioners that I believe is worth repeating :
Never forget how far you’ve come. Everything you have gotten through. All the times you have pushed on even when you felt you couldn’t. All the mornings you got out of bed no matter how hard it was. All the times you wanted to give up but you got through another day. Never forget how much strength you have learned and developed.
I would like to add: Never forget that we lift each other up – we make the world a better place – when we show our goodness.
My prayer is that rather than sinking deeper into fear or pain or chaos, we can all find enough hope to get us through the storm. I think we can find that hope by reaffirming our trust in God and in humanity.