It’s been a couple of weeks now, this new normal. Our once highly anticipated Spring Break has taken on the struggles of a new Lent, a second Lent. The notion of suffering has never come easy to me. Any interruption of plans, expectations, and events has always thrown me for a loop, and this one is quite the loop.
Three high-spirited teenage daughters grace this house, these hallways. Their music and laughter resound. So, too, their disagreements and wounded prides. We have already had our fair share of arguments as well as (miraculously and finally) the apologies and reconciliations that have led to much joy and contentment. Maybe this time of forced communion is necessary. Maybe God does know what he is doing.
I’ve oscillated between thoughts and feelings of frustration and despair along with a few glimmers of peace and hope. I try to cling to what I know. God is good. He is faithful, loving, and wise. Even amidst the uncertainty of the future, I need to trust that all is in his hands. He holds it. All of it. We go about our day, sheltered in place. Sheltered in him. I’ve explained numerous times, it seems, to my teens the importance of staying put, of flattening the curve, of denying our desires for the good of others. So many in our community depend on our prudence, our sacrifice. We are truly offering up this time for the health and well-being of others, but these are pretty abstract concepts for a daily reality that is already starting to feel old.
We also seek and have found joy during these weeks at home. My dining room table overflows with half-completed puzzles and canvas paintings that need to dry. The gals have been busy, and their younger brother has, too. Spiderman paintings and puzzles of Thanos and the Avengers abound. This is still the “honeymoon” phase, and I know it. We will all have to dig deep in order to sustain this for any length of time.
Sheltering in place. Sheltered in him. Where you are. As you are. No pretense, no games, all wounds, all brokenness, all exposed to healing and love. Shelter as you are. Shelter in him. Like a child in her Father’s arms, we must allow ourselves to be carried in his grace and love, trusting in his plan.
“He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty” (Ps 91: 1).