“Blessed is the person who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.” – James 1:12
To say the last few weeks have been filled with trials would be an understatement. We all feel the weight of what is going on in our world right now and what we are experiencing is truly unique and historic for all of us.
One of the things I’ve noticed about myself, and maybe you’ve experienced this in some way, is that certain days of the week are harder than others. For me the last three Sundays have been very difficult and for obvious reasons. I’ve been showing up at church like I normally do but I’m preaching to a camera and to an empty room. I miss seeing your faces; I miss the conversations and meeting new people. And I miss seeing folks care for one another.
On those days I find myself feeling more emotional, down and isolated than other days. And I imagine there are days in your week that are more difficult than others too. Here are a few things I’m trying to do to maintain a level of mental, physical and spiritual health:
- Eat Healthy. At times like this I’m more likely to snack and binge, and not necessarily on carrots and celery. I’m trying to make a conscience decision to eat healthy things.
- Sleep. I’m an introvert, but right now I don’t have as much time to myself as I normally do since our whole family is home all day. For me that means my energy stores are drained a bit quicker than usual and I’m finding I need more sleep these days.
- Exercise. I love going to the gym but that’s not possible these days so I’ve had to get creative and find other resources. You’d be surprised what’s available for free online. And if nothing else just go for a walk.
- Stay connected. We have the technology to connect with people but with most of us doing work, entertainment and socialization online “screen fatigue” will likely set in. I imagine when all of this is over we’re going to be spending a lot less time in front of screens and more time in front of people. But staying connected is important. So I’m making phone calls and sending emails and continuing to do social media.
- Continue your spiritual habits (or begin them.) Connecting with our Heavenly Father through prayer, scripture, music, etc. really does help us get through difficult times. If you’re in a small group, make sure you show up to your online meeting. If you’re not in one, we’re starting a brand new one this week on Wednesdays at 7pm. Reply to this email to get connected to it.
- Recognize the good. There is still a lot of good around us and we need to recognize and celebrate it. Enjoy the extra time you’re getting with your kids and family, it won’t last forever. All of the news is not bad so look for some of the good news that’s coming out of people serving and caring for others, making sacrifices and those that are leading us through this well.
We’re going to get through this season. Things may never be exactly the same again, but things will get better and in the end, as James tells us, we will be blessed, and others will be blessed as well, because of our perseverance.
See you Sunday online.