How much has changed in the way that you and your family do life?
I ask this because part of us wants things to go back just like they were, to what’s familiar, what’s comfortable – life how we knew it. But when we go through something as dramatic as a worldwide pandemic with a nation-wide lockdown, we have to acknowledge that some things will never be the same! Many of us have loved the slower pace of life, and we don’t want to go back to life before lockdown. I want to challenge you as parents, grandparents, childminders to ask, “what is God moulding and changing in our household?”
You’ve had time to stop; to sort through that messy cupboard, to teach new life skills, to be part of your child’s school day, part of your spouse’s workday – how has this impacted how you do life?
In Isaiah 43:18-19, it says: “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland”.
God tells us, even in the Old Testament, that He is doing a new thing. A new thing is a good thing! He is making a WAY for us in the wilderness; He is giving us streams of living water in times when we are in the wastelands. What streams of water have you felt God flow into your life?
I am such a busy bee and have always measured the success of my day by how much I have done. God has taught me to take time to ponder, dream and listen to His voice by enjoying my garden and sitting outdoors. I achieve the same in a day, but with less busyness; and as my contentment levels have risen, I have found purpose in what I do. If you still feel trapped “in the wilderness”, I encourage you to seek God and to find your “stream”.
Some healthy steps to take as individuals and families:
– Take a moment to list what you have enjoyed about the lockdown; try to be specific and detailed.
– Take a highlighter and mark the items in the list above that you want to carry forward out of lockdown into the post lockdown world; maybe it’s just a smarter, better, or healthier way of doing things.
– Start to list the things that you have missed about normal life, the things you can’t wait to get back to doing.
– Pray together as a family about what your “new normal” could look like.
– Using your lists, start to create what life will look like for you all, “forgetting the former things and not dwelling on the past”.
As lockdown begins to lift, let’s be mindful to guard our “new thing” and to listen to the promptings of our heavenly Father.
Let’s make time for God to make a way for us and to constantly be our “stream” as we navigate life.
One day, when we look back at this time in our lives, let’s not have regrets, but fond memories of the new family life we got to carve out together.
Psalm 1:2-4 says that those who “meditate on His law day and night – that person – is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither – whatever they do prospers.” My prayer for you today is that you and your family begin to yield fruit and prosper as you commit to living your “new life” planted firmly into Him.