If you are like me, you are receiving daily emails from every airline you’ve ever flown explaining all that they are doing to keep you safe if you travel with them. With constantly changing news and health and travel advisories, perhaps you, like many in IDEAS, have been forced to rethink or change your upcoming travel plans, conference attendance, and daily habits.
You’ve probably tried to sort through all the recommendations to stay safe and to protect yourself from the virus. We’ve all heard stories of those who, out of fear, have responded in a self-centered or angry way, such as hoarding toilet paper, being disruptive on a plane out of fear of a fellow passenger who was sneezing, etc.
Is it possible to respond in a different way, a way that brings us together and encourages others who are concerned about the growing threat?
Our IDEAS crisis manager gave these words of wisdom to our community this week:
“As the COVID-19 virus continues to spread and create fear and strong government response, IDEAS hopes that as ambassadors for Christ, we can model hope and love to those around us. The opposite of these would be giving into fear or arrogance or indifference. Each of us will have to answer situationally what demonstrates faith and love in the moment. In doing so, it is our prayer that we will be a source of hope and light.”
We encourage all of us during this time of stress and fear among many to remember the words of Paul, “For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ ”
Many of the steps to keep us safe will also isolate us. Working at home in our pajamas may seem like a dream come to true to some, but the lack of face-to-face interaction could also make us feel alone. No longer gathering for our favorite sports events or social activities takes away our natural opportunity to look someone in the face and really see how they are doing.
I encourage you to look for intentional ways to reach out to others: texting, Face Time, or an actual phone call will keep us connected to those who we might normally “run into.” Think of those who are older around you and consider taking them a home-cooked meal.
May we love others more than just looking out for ourselves. That might be remembered long after the crisis has passed.
How are you responding to this current crisis? What steps are you taking to be a source of hope and light to those around you?