by Janice Lichty, 05/04/2020, Kingsley, MI
This is the third week of being home bound which for me, being an introvert, is easy. My husband just returned from grocery shopping at Meijer, my daughter is working (she is a health care worker) and I should be doing some household cleaning task, but I have thoughts going around and around in my mind and am feeling compelled to rid them from my brain by putting them into words.
Several years ago, hurricanes hit Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico resulting in massive damage and also loss of life. Some well-known religious leaders took this as an opportunity to chastise this country by saying God was angry because the country had turned its back on him. With the COVID19 epidemic in full swing, some of these thoughts are resurfacing. It didn’t set well with me then and it doesn’t now.
At the time of the hurricanes, I messaged a friend, a former minister whom I have great admiration for, about his thoughts. The following is not an exact quote by him but what I remember from that conversation. He said “I would not be so bold as to state with certainty what God’s intentions are. How could anyone possibly know what God is thinking? I do know that we, humans, are here to love and help each other. What better time to show that than during a disaster.” His wise words have come back into my mind today in the wake of the coronavirus.
Many people in our country and around the world have been afflicted with this disease and many have died. I would bet that a large number of these people are religious and have a strong faith in God. Wouldn’t it be more productive for us to leave our judgements behind for now and use our faith to say a prayer for those who are battling coronavirus, for those who have died and for the families who are experiencing bad times. Coronavirus could affect any of us or any of our family members and friends, so let’s say a prayer for each other too. Many of us are confined to our homes and maybe feel that we are helpless in doing anything, but we can do this one small thing.
I, along with many of my co-workers and many people across this country, are unemployed and it is uncertain when we will be able to return to work. Many people are deemed to be essential workers and are still working. I am thankful for the first responders and anyone who is working in health care, the mental health therapists, grocery stores workers, truck drivers, postal service workers, bank employees, newspaper delivery workers, educators and managers who are still taking care of daily tasks for the workers who aren’t there. I am thankful for the local and national TV stations who are keeping us informed, amidst the constant barrage of accusations of fake news. I’m thankful that the garbage is still being picked up and that gas stations are still open. I’m thankful for our government officials who are keeping us informed, albeit some more than others. I’m thankful that I can listen to music, read books, watch TV shows and movies thus keeping my time occupied. I know that I haven’t included everyone but know that I am thankful for you all.
There are many people in various occupations that touch our lives daily and in many different ways. Some protect us, some make our lives easier by providing services that we couldn’t possibly live without (and haven’t we all realized this in the last several weeks) and some entertain us. Everyone, no matter what their profession is, plays a vital part in our lives. At this moment, in this crisis, the health care and grocery store workers stand out to me. At the same time, I am praising these selfless individuals, I will not needlessly attack others in any profession. Everyone is an important part of this country and contributes in many different ways.
Everyone stay safe and healthy and before long we will be back to our “normal” activities.