Every generation faces its own circumstances just as did Israel and all the nations in the times of the great seers like Samuel, Nathan, and Gad. Rocked by attacks on 9-11, our current circumstances appear filled with disease. Remember Ebola? Now, we find ourselves in the throes of a pandemic driven by COVID-19, a virus few of us dreamt, imagined, or even thought about before it’s uprising. The coronavirus has impacted every crevice of society. It will continue to bear influence on our future culture. As was true after 9-11, our lives will not be the same post-COVID. There is no returning to “back then.” The pandemic has forever changed our collective trajectory. It has also left an indelible mark on our psyche and wounded our souls.
Studies show that those who watched the events of 9-11 unfold suffered similar episodes of PTSD akin to those who were physically present on the streets of New York City that morning. I remember watching it repeatedly over and over again, in shock and disbelief, until suddenly I couldn’t look at it anymore. My mind went into a shutdown of sorts, no longer willing to take in the images of the falling Towers. My brain no longer wanted to process them.
My Dad didn’t talk much about growing up as a young boy during the Second World War. I remember wanting to interview him for a class project and he refused except for a small morsel. He described looking out the window of a place he and his Mom had taken up refuge in after fleeing their home shortly after Christmas 194-. He saw a woman carrying her newborn walking by a pile of war-torn rubble. Suddenly, the rubble exploded. Dad, tears running down his cheeks, described watching the now headless woman running back and forth in circles clutching her screaming newborn until she collapsed and fell dead to the ground. It’s a horrific scene I can’t imagine witnessing firsthand. It’s the only story Dad ever told me about the War. Obviously, even though I wasn’t there, it stuck.
Trauma and pain are real. Untreated, they manifest themselves in awful, ugly ways. A lot of our hurts sneak up on us. We don’t know where they come from but suddenly, out of the blue, there they are. It is easier to identify those hurts that hit close to the heart from a near, dear personal thorn in our side. The impact over the years of big events like shuttles crashing, towers crumbling, and viruses mutating is a far lessor known crusher of souls.
Blogging in a pandemic, one can hardly ignore the impact of COVID-19 on our world. It has crept into every crevice of our lives, dominating the world stage and feasting on our fears while noshing on our hearts, souls, and minds.
There is a thin line separating the reality of our present circumstance and the flame of a hope eternal promised and anticipated in the future.
As a Christian blogger, do you provide your readers with a retreat into your refuge or do you fuel the conversations grappling with how to live life in a new paradigm permanently permeated by a pandemic?
Amid this dilemma we find ourselves in, it is crucial for us to practice the necessary art of self-care. Self-care is a healthy means of focusing on oneself to promote better overall health, mental well-being, and spiritual wellness. It is a process that has deep, ancient roots and is a primary method healthcare for many people around the globe.
7 Strategies for Practicing the Necessary Art of Self-Care
- Take some time off. Unplug. Put away your smart phone, tablet and other electronic devices.
- Take a break. Fast from social media, emails, texts and other non-present communication.
- Opt in for some real, in-person engagement and face to face conversation with someone you’ve been meaning to catch up with but never seem to find the time.
- Make the time. People die unexpectedly on a daily basis. Don’t take today for granted.
- Schedule a day at a spa to help unwind, relax, and relieve stress.
- Go for a walk in a community park or nature preserve. Being out in nature nourishes the soul and a walk refreshes our spirit.
- Pour a cup of coffee, sit on your patio, and spend some focused time in prayer and conversation with God. Spiritual practices, like prayer, fulfill our longings and quell our anxieties, worries, and fears. When we connect with the Lord, we are more steadfastly grounded and centered.
As you assess different areas of your life that are in need of some extra focus and attention, you can shape a plan that is best suited to help you live a longer, happier, and healthier life.
I pray that you will find the time to refresh, recharge, and refuel by practicing the necessary art of self-care. It’s a long race. Make sure you do what you need to do to ensure you cross the finish line well.
The Devotional Guy™
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