Faces on Faith: This is a time for us to turn to our faith
We’ve all heard the expression, “the only constant in life is change.” And we’ve all experienced change many times. Sometimes the change is fairly minor and gentle in the way it takes place. Other times the change is greater and more rapid; I’m thinking here of marriages, births and even death of friends and family members. But now we are immersed in a change of catastrophic proportions. A short time ago we lived what we considered to be normal lives, doing the things we enjoyed and were used to doing. Now all sense of normalcy has fled. We are told to confine ourselves at home, make only critical trips outside, keep six feet or more apart from each other; in other words, isolate ourselves as best we can.
COVID-19 is the enemy and even as we learn more about this virus, there is much more that we don’t know. As we search for information, we find even expert explanations are prefaced by phrases such as, “We think ” or “It’s possible that ” We read scary numbers in the news, people infected and people dying. And the projections of how many people might become infected or die are even more frightening. We ask ourselves, “Who should we believe when there is so much uncertainty?” It seems the answer is no more certain than the question.
When we find ourselves facing uncertainty, fear and depression, where do we turn. When we are in that state, we need to stay connected to family and friends to be constantly reminded that we are not alone, and to remind them, in turn, that they are loved and not alone. We need to call on our clergy, pastors, priests and rabbis. And when we begin to feel overwhelmed, we should be calling our primary care physicians. Don’t underestimate the severity of what’s happening to you or dismiss it with an, “It’ll pass.”
In particular, this is a time for us to turn to our faith. We are still in Lent, the season of spiritual self-examination. What a perfect opportunity to run a check on our level of trust and confidence in our Lord. He is the one who can provide joy in the midst of sorrow, confidence in the midst of fear. He is the one who can prompt us to lovingly care for others, even those who are different from ourselves. Ultimately, if we place our faith and trust in him, he is the one who assures us of life; life in the here and now, and life in his presence forever.
The Rev. Alan Kelmereit is the assisting rector at Saint Michael and All Angels Episcopal Church.