When life slows down...
Welcome to our church blog. This first post is by someone in our congregation whose family have had to self-isolate for the past week. Here she offers her reflections on her busy life having to slow down.
I am a high achiever.
This is not a boast, more like a confession. It’s not a great thing to always be rushing around focussed on tasks. I feel driven to make the most of this life, but sometimes I don’t know if I’m running my life or if my life is running me! Often, I find life is just one long list of things I have to do. Even prayer can turn into a task, something to get done and tick off the list.
But now this self-isolation has meant life has slowed down. There are no people for dinner, no couples group, no collecting children, no parent council, no tap class, no swimming, no church, no travelling to work or even to the shops, no helping my neighbours (instead I have to receive their help)
But more than not having to do all these items on the list, I no longer have to hold all these things in my head. That’s the real trick with a busy life, it’s keeping all the right information at the front of your brain at the right time, so that you don’t realise at 5:55pm on a Tuesday that you have to collect child 3 from Martial Arts at exact same time as welcoming child 4’s trombone teacher to the house.
My head feels much lighter, there is space to think. I like it. For now….
In all this time to think, one of the things I’ve reflected on are the stress levels of those around me. Friends talk to me about how they feel anxious, neighbours on chat groups are stressing and I see WhatsApp and Facebook going crazy with people feeling out of control. Strangely, I feel completely different. I have no better idea of what’s ahead than they do but one thing separates us. I trust God, completely. Trusting God makes me feel safeand it gives me hope.
It makes me feel safe because even though I know bad things happen, I also know that God has promised that he will never leave us alone. We will never be in any difficulty or pain or challenge on our own. God is our ever present help in times of trouble. Maybe that doesn’t make you feel better, but it does me. I have known pain in my life and I have seen others around me go through all sorts of terrible situations and I hear the cry from so many of them and from my own heart - ‘God is faithful’. We never know what God will do as he meets us in our difficulty, but we do know that he will meet us.
It gives me hope because I know that this world is not my home and one day, as God has promised, I will be with him in a beautiful new world. In the meantime I live in this one, sometimes thriving sometimes just existing. And although I’m here, I see this place with different glasses to those who don’t know God because I know there will be an end, which will lead to a new beginning. Our future is full of hope.
And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.