It all started happening like a series of dominoes falling one right after another.
School let out which is my job. Sporting events, concerts, movies, and entertainment closed. Then, businesses of all kinds shut down- restaurants, salons, clothing stores. One right after another…the dominoes just kept falling. Right along with it, fell church gatherings and worship services. Then, family gatherings were even affected. Family dinners, birthday parties, seeing loved ones…all falling, like dominoes, one right after the other.
The domino affect started at the most external parts of our lives and spiraled down to the very heart of our existence. We felt it hard.
One by one, as each thing was taken from our daily routine and experience, we began to realize just how much we take for granted. We never realized how much all those activities mean to us until we can’t have them.
It’s never been more true.
When tough stuff happens, one of the ways we try to cope with it is to figure out what life lesson there is to be learned in it. Better yet, we try to listen for that still small voice, and how He’s trying to gently (or not so gently) guide us through the tough time.
This pandemic, the resulting shut downs, and the stay at home orders have altered our lives so radically. Of course, there are huge lessons to be learned.
For me, there are many ways the Lord has been speaking like learning to live with open hand and what is essential in church. One way is how much I take life for granted. The old adage “you don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone” has never been more true. And like most things in life, you can hear someone say it, and you nod your and agree. But you don’t really know it for yourself until you’ve experienced it.
Losing the direct connection with people has been a big domino knocked over for me. After a few weeks of not getting to see my work people, I realized how much I enjoy working with them and miss them. It only took 1 week of missing church to realize how much I enjoy gathering and worshipping each week with my congregation.
Not getting to hang out with friends has been a real bummer. My friends really feed my soul when I get to spend time with them.
The greatest loss, however, is the time missing with family and the gatherings around special occasions. Easter, birthdays, etc are just not the same when you can’t get together with your loved ones.
What has been the MOST heartbreaking for so many is the loss of loved ones when they pass away. The grieving process has really been disrupted for so many in the past several weeks.
This is the greatest of all the dominoes falling, and it hurts the most for so many. And it makes us realize just how much we take for granted. We discover the raw truth for ourselves “you don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone”
But then, here’s the gif!. Here’s the silver lining! Here’s the joy!
We will have a second chance at appreciating all we’ve taken for granted!
When this season of separation is over, all the places and all the services, and all the people we’re missing and longing to touch, we will get to experience again!! Hurray!
Well, except for those loved ones who’ve passed away………
Sadly, There’s not anything I can say to ease the loss that so many have felt during these pandemic days when we’ve experienced so many unexpected deaths. The only comfort that begins to help is the promise that Jesus is always with us and the promise of the resurrection is true.
It reminds me of this verse:
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us. Romans 8:18
Even in the great loss of loved ones who’ve passed away, we have this promise that the reunion to experience in eternity will be beyond compare! If we can’t wait to see each other at church or at the Mexican restaurant, just think of how wonderful our reunion in eternity will be!!!
Let this be our hope as we learn not take life for granted here and now…….
And as we wait eagerly for heaven!
So, as life begins to open up again, and we begin to build our dominoes up again. While we’ll look forward to hugging our friends, co-workers, and loved ones, I don’t ever want to forget the lesson learned here. I don’t ever want to take for granted again how much people matter in my life. I don’t ever want to lose sight of the many gifts of the wonderful people I’ve been given!
What have you taken for granted? What do you look forward to most as we start setting the dominoes of our lives back up again? I’d love to hear about it!
While you’re waiting for life to open back up, here’s a free mini course to help you trust God with your plans! Sign up here!