Hey friends, how are you doing? We’ve had the best weather here in my neck of the woods. The last few days have been absolutely glorious, with bright, beautiful, sunshine, praise the Lord. There is something special about sunshine, that makes it seem as if everything will be okay, I love days like these, they are God’s gift to me. Jazz (our cat) and I are at it again, she insists on taking all the space near our kitchen window. She is convinced she is capable of catching the birds as they flitter from tree to tree, in the backyard. Perhaps I’ll take the time to begin our kitchen garden, the soil would be perfect for it. Have you started on your kitchen garden? How early do you usually begin?
This situation is getting very real, isn’t it? The quarantine time has been lengthened to the end of April now. Our governing bodies have taken even stricter measures to protect its own people. At the start of this virus, my husband said the closer we personally get to disaster, the more selfish we become, (such a wise man, he is definitely a keeper). When disaster strikes in someone else’s yard, it’s easy to pray for them, to give to them, to feel empathy and sympathy. Ah but the closer it gets to us, the less we think of the unfortunate, the louder we play the blame game. Fear causes us to hoard and to lack patience with each other. Fortunately for most of us, the Lord has placed us in a situation that almost guarantees to put any patience, we thought we had to the test. Are you patient? How do you know?
I must admit I struggle with patience. This is a trait, I have asked the Lord for help with, on more than one occasion (be careful what you asked for, you just might get it). The truth is as a child of God, this is a character that’s given to us when we accepted Jesus Christ as our Savior. The Holy Spirit dwells in us and this is part of the fruit that comes long with His presence in our lives. Now all we have to do is exercise this trait, which is always easier said than done. As soon as we think we are patient people, something comes along to prove we are not as patient as we thought.
We’ve now been given the opportunity to spend time with our family; every day, twenty-four hours a day; day in and day out, for the foreseeable future. Most of us were not exactly prepared to spend so much time with each other. For most, before this virus brought us mandatory stay at home orders, the most time spent together was between three to five hours out of a twenty-four day. The forced enclosure soon puts most of our best qualities to the test. The barrel of love, gentleness, patience, joy is slowly being depleted the more time we’re ask to spend with each other. Believe me, a few relationships will not survive this journey, without holding in to the Lord with both hands. How do we ensure that our relationships remain intact during this quarantine of the coronavirus?
Pray – ask the Lord for wisdom (we need it to navigate this new normal).
Ask the Lord to keep watch over the door of our lips
Ask for (wait for it….) patience
Read the Bible – this is God’s time to talk to us. He tells us more about Himself, more about us. He also tells how we are to live this life, even during this new normal.
Plan for the day. Believe it or not, failure to plan for the day is almost guaranteed to end in frustration and anger. Even though, you may be regulated to stay at home, plan for the day. We may have to include activities such as daily chores, ensuring assigned school tasks are completed, and deliberately, intentionally choosing to spend time with the people in our lives.
Read scripture aloud with the kids,
Watch television together
Be deliberate about conversations, think before we speak ( there will be a few apologies that way). Ask: will these words edify, encourage, build up? Remember exhortations and reprimands are also forms of edification. Be careful, our words tell the tale of who we are becoming, ensure they represent the Lord well.
Be intentional about actions, (they depict who we really are, do they not?) Stay in our lane, become the person, the Lord designed just for us. Remember although we are always responsible for our own actions, we can also cause others to stumble in their walk with the Lord. Be careful, our actions tell the story of what we actually believe.
Leave time to be alone, to enjoy a cup of coffee, read a book; the family will thank you for it).
And lastly, pray, my friend, pray. We really do want to still have some friends and family at the end of this obligatory enclosure.
How do you preserve the relationships in your life?