by Diana LéGere
Where has time gone? A 2-week hiatus to "flatten the curve" is now an 8-month ordeal with no end in sight. Women are adjusting to a "new normal" that falls short as the economy is shifting. While schools are camping out at the kitchen table, telecommuting has become the norm. Layoffs are still pending. Times have changed, and we all miss our jobs—the way things were.
While resisting the urge to welcome hopelessness, we’re grieving. It's normal to mourn a loss. Women are navigating a floodgate of emotions, permanent and fluctuating change, and the burden of endless responsibilities while maintaining sanity and self-worth. Sometimes it's hard.
Seeking God's will, above all else, will provide the strength we need to emerge from this when the dust settles. God's Word promises truth for every hardship.
"Peace I leave with you; my peace, I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid."
Letting go of fear is tough, but the Bible says not to be afraid or discouraged. God is with us, walks before us, and will never forsake us. He saw the pandemic before its onset. If our faith is in God, then we will see he allowed this season and unique circumstances for each of us.
God's will for our life is to prioritize our intimacy with him, and we can count on whatever we are facing to draw us closer to him. God's word is an anchor during the storm. Hold on.
"Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
Times are troubling, and we feel uneasy. But it's vital to remember we didn't imagine coronavirus coming, and we don't know what will follow. But GOD does. If we seek him, he will answer and deliver us from fear. (Psalm 34:4) That doesn't remove the trial, but we’ll have peace in the storm.
We may not understand why, but we can trust our Creator. Faith means we don't need all the answers. Whatever crossroads we're on, our strength comes when we trust him, even when we don't see a way out. (1 Corinthians 5:7) Ask God to show you his will for this season and wait for his timing. God acts on behalf of those who wait for him. (Isaiah 64:4)
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.
Reporters are bombarding us with messages to trap us in an interminable whirlwind of drama and confusion. In this season, it's especially important to censor our viewing. Roman's 12:12 tells us to be "transformed by the renewal of your mind." Focus on powerful positive messages. Stay in the Word.
When we are one with God, the fruit of that intimacy will be peace. Renew your mind through Scripture, reading, and prayer. Understand that while there may be many disappointments during this pandemic, discouragement is a choice. Don't go there.
Dig up the root of your fears. Do you feel you've lost validation without a job? You may define yourself in your career. Remember who you are; you are the daughter of The King. Rather than focusing on lack, focus on possibilities. Use this time to revive your body, mind, and soul and allow God to use you for his purposes during this season.
"Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart."
What are your desires while you wait this out? Perhaps you're still pining over the past while tuning out the present. I know. You would rather skip the pandemic. We all would. But this moment will never pass again. Use it wisely.
How can you emerge better following a brave encounter with this season? We learn more in the valley than the mountain top. This, too, shall pass, but this season's equipping power will remain with you forever.
If we follow God's desires, success will follow regardless of what the world says. If we trust in him and seek his guidance, we can count on him to direct our paths and allow all things to unfold for our good. Remember, he carves out our course, and knows where we will end up.
Dr. Charles Stanley says, "Obey God and leave the consequences to him." When God is living in and through us, we will operate in our purpose.
Pursue opportunities to build up your skills and engage in activities that will strengthen relationships. Small successes empower and equip you for the other side.
As you tune into God, he will direct you to his desires. He may even lead you to do something extraordinary. His ways are higher than ours.
Diana LéGere is the author of Ripples: A Memoir of Reflection and Celebrations of Praise: 365 Ways To Fill Each Day With Meaningful Moments. Her other books include Feeding Families Authentic Southern: History, Traditions & Stories and the upcoming book He Spoke: A Memoir of Grace. Diana lives in Richmond, VA.