The city I live in, Melbourne, Australia, recently enacted a second “stay-at-home” citywide lockdown. The mental strain of repeating the experience of living under such circumstances can be difficult to handle. So I’ve been praying to gain a sense of peace and normalcy despite the situation.
As I’ve prayed, I’ve come to the realization that not everything that one might consider part of normal life has changed during this difficult time. There are many heartwarming, natural things that we can still do.
For instance, we can still express love for our families, offer words of appreciation to those staffing the supermarket checkouts, and smile at the delivery person at our door. We can still clap our hands in delight when something brings us joy, dance with the little ones in our household, or enjoy using technology to share comfort and encouragement with family and friends that we can’t meet up with.
The reason that we can still experience and share qualities that gladden our hearts, even in the face of difficulties, is because there is a divine Love that is tenderly embracing us as we go about our daily activities. This Love is something boundlessly good and constant: God. And God’s love is still just as present during a lockdown. This love from our heavenly Father-Mother, God, naturally sustains our well-being. It buoys our spirits and inspires us to realize that it’s not just possible but natural to feel loved, always.
And right now, we are each the expression of that divine lovingkindness, created in God’s spiritual image and likeness to express the qualities that naturally reflect the Divine (see Genesis 1:26, 27). Knowing this spiritual truth about ourselves empowers us to be the buoyant and happy individuals that exemplify how God created us. We can be courteous, considerate, kindly, and caring to others. We can continue to give encouraging support to friends and loved ones in every way possible. We can keep up individual prayer and spiritual practices, and enjoy church fellowship through online services if meeting in person is not allowed.
As I prayed with these ideas one recent morning, my thoughts were uplifted. I found my heart filling with gratitude. I felt so convinced that the goodness of God’s love is right at hand. It hasn’t gone anywhere. It is still present as it always has been in the past, and will be in the future.
This divinely impelled gratitude also led me to treasure many everyday things, including seeing my home as a haven, a place of shelter. Instead of thinking of it as a prison and resenting being told to stay at home, I now cherish where I live as a place to nurture and express God-given qualities.
As those of us around the world in various stages of lockdown patiently stay at home, daily prayer inspires me. It encourages me to remain hopeful instead of being fearful, to steadfastly trust in God’s ever-present care, and to keep a more spiritual perspective of normalcy uppermost in thought, rather than counting the days in striving to reach it. God-given qualities of strength, joy, and peace are always ours to express wherever we are. With divine Love’s help, each of us can successfully find and express that divine normalcy, even in these uncertain times.
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