Not a fancy title. Not a fancy word. Just how I am feeling after today's COVID Regulation update for Manitoba.
I am not an extrovert. I am an introvert. I'm not planning on arguing the good and bad and lovely and not so great portions of those traits. AND, we all have parts of each in us. However, in general, I am happy in my own space with a small group of people. So you'd think COVID is a great thing for someone like me. And in some ways it is - but even I have a breaking point.
Some of this is repetitive from previous posts. But I dare say it again - I am not fine with this.
This is not ok. It is sad and scary and strange and a pile of other 's' words.
My mind is strange - as you may well have realized by now - I have a weird confession to make. There are parts of me that wanted a tighter regulated world. I wanted to be shut-in and not have to go out. I wanted to stay at home - I am comfy here. And as I thought these thoughts I am strangled in guilt about them. THEN - when the regulations come out - I cry. WHAT the???? One part of my brain is fine in isolation - it wants this and likes this. The other part of my brain is crying out for people and hugs and freedom to just be and do what we did before. It's like a teeter totter up in this old head of mine. One time up and ok and then the next down and in tears.
My heart goes out to the extroverts, the store owners, the teachers, the healthcare workers, the grieving, the sick, the lonely, the aged, the kids, the pastors, the churches, the restaurants owners, the homeless, the jobless. The anxiety and fear that you must be feeling outweighs the flipflop of my teeter totter mind. My prayers are with you.
And those in the USA - the uncertainty amidst a pandemic - wow. My prayers are with you.
My mind is tossing and turning and nothing is mixing up into something useable right now. No sage words of advice pop out. Nothing is marinating and nothing is ready to be cooked up and served to you.
Right now life feels chaotic.
Today, after a meeting, I was reflecting on the storms of our life and remembered the Bible story of Elijah. (1 Kings 19). Elijah was tired and depressed and prayed (this was a great many of prayer) that he could just die. He was tired of it all. And God did what a parent would do - first fed Elijah, fed him and had him sleep. To heal mentally, we sometimes have to start with the physical. If we are not well physically - it is hard to fix our mental state. Then God knew that Elijah needed to be in his presence so he invited Elijah to meet him on the mountain and that He, God, would pass by.
There was a ferocious wind - but God was not in the wind. Then there was an earthquake - but God was not in the earthquake. After that there was a fire, but God was not in the fire. Then, there was a gentle whisper. A quiet voice. God was in that softness. And in that he ministered to Elijah.
As I watch the earthquake of our world right now I wonder where is God. Perhaps, in this quiet that we are given - in the peace of our household, perhaps we have the opportunity to feel God pass.
For those whose homes are not a space of peace - whose homes are a place of wind and fire and chaos - I pray for you. I pray that you find nourishment for your body and then nourishment for your soul. If you go for a walk - listen for the quiet. If you can hide under a blanket in your room - listen for the gentle voice. If you need to talk - reach out.
Again, I have no answers - but I think I sometimes look at the chaos and wonder - where is God in all of this? And if we fill ourselves with the craziness, we may miss him. If we only look for him in the messiness, we might not catch him walking by - but maybe, if we pause, in the quiet - we get a glimpse and feel his peace.
Don't, however, stay in the quiet. Glimpse God. Pray to him. Shout at him. Yell. Scream. Praise. Cheer. Cry. Laugh with him.
THEN, go and find ways to help others find that peace. Drop off baskets of love. Send letters of encouragement. Phone a friend. Text a colleague. Send a coffee. Watch a movie online with your family. Help someone else get a glimpse of God. Help someone hear the still small whisper of God - who knows, you might be the whisper God is sending to someone else.
And, if these thoughts don't do it for you - that is ok - find a way. And remember, that all over the world, we are all sharing in this crazy, unbelievable WOW moment. You are not alone.