Well, we’ve made it through the first month of the Pandemic. At first, it was hard because it was so seemingly sudden. We hunkered down and adjusted as best as we could to our new normal . We went from:
- Being afraid of not having enough toilet paper,
- Not knowing how to mute our microphone and
- Worrying if we’d ever be able to hug our family and friends again.
By now, most of us have a few rolls of toilet paper stashed away. We understand Zoom etiquette better. But we still don’t know when we’ll arrive at the “Promised Land” of the future.
In the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament), the Israelites crossed the Red Sea to freedom. They rejoiced in their release from captivity, but their joy was short lived. They yearned for the ‘good old days’ when they could at least have some soup with a little onion in it. They recalled euphorically how much better they had it back in Egypt.
Even after they witnessed great miracles;
- The crossing of the Red Sea and
- The giving of the 10 commandments at Mount Sinai,
the Israelites were still afraid. Despite all evidence to the contrary, they still lacked faith. And as a result, they built a golden calf!
Like the Israelites, we too are now in the desert. We’re in the period where each day is much like the last one. We are unsure when we will get to return to the “good old days.” We strive to stay grateful, we grieve the loss of what was and the disappointment of what isn’t.
As much as we don’t appreciate this endless wandering, there will be light at the end of the tunnel. What the Israelites forgot was that they had everything they needed. (Although not necessarily everything they wanted.). They had Manna, they had water, they had their tribes and their families. They had time to spiritually build themselves up. They didn’t need to build a golden calf, but they were in the nascent stages of spiritual development.
This pandemic, as hard as it is, is an opportunity for us to grow spiritually. We can use this time for inner reflection and cultivation of gratitude. The Promised Land is coming, that’s why it’s called the “promised” land. We just have to trust that we will journey there. And instead of counting our days, we should look to see how we can make our days count.