Change sometimes brings Worry
Psalm 34:14 Depart from evil and do good; seek, inquire for, and crave peace and pursue it.
Isaiah 43:1 Don’t fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine.”
John 14:27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
Matthew 6:34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
How do you feel about change? I have usually not been a big fan of change. But, that is life, and we all deal with changes throughout life. My earliest memory of seeing changes was to realize my younger brother had some more leniency and less rules than I did. At first, I resented it, but then it was explained that girls can face dangers that boys don’t face as much. (Such was the thinking in the 1960’s by many parents raising their children.) It seemed females could be more easily taken advantage of, but the truth came out a few decades later that boys were just as vulnerable as girls.
But the point is really not about differences between how children are raised. We have been living with a huge change for the past several months. COVID has caused us to restrict movement; there was no spontaneously running to shop, to meet friends for lunch, to volunteer, many were not able to go to work and started the learning curve of how to do their job from home. We were not living carefree as we had been. Children had to learn how to attend school from home, not being with classmates and friends, suddenly not being allowed to play with their sport teams. Many persons were laid off and comfortable folks were now suddenly fearful of bills, had to figure out new childcare options if they could go to work, and had to find time to add helping more with online schooling to their lists of duties.
For a few moments, we thought the fear and anxieties and learning about the illness would be the headlines for a short time. It’s now moving into the sixth month in short order. So we are now wondering about the new “normal.”
I have just finished reading a couple of books that deal with this thought, although for slightly different reasons. The first was a book called A Woman’s Place by Lynn Austin which covered how the Second World War changed America and many women who had primarily been housewives and mothers, working within their homes, we suddenly working in factories and on production lines. (Prior to this war there were few women working outside except nurses, teachers and librarians). Suddenly, with the onset of America entering the war, women moved into the factory world and industry jobs. The country thought they were facing change for just a short time, just until the end of the war. They thought things would revert to ‘before’ when the boys came home from war. That did not happen.
The second book was also by Lynn Austin and entitled All Things New. This story started at the end of the Civil War, set in North or South Carolina and the former wealthy plantation and slave owners had to return to their homes and thought they would be rebuilding things as they had been. But the slaves were freed, and although an adjustment for both sides to learn, the change was permanent. And one comment by one of the women who had resisted so many of the changes, was “I guess we need to find the new normal, then.”
She was feeling as though the black family who lived and planted crops on her former land were still to be bossed about by her; she’d known them as her slaves, and some remained on her property after the war ended. Her expectation was that nothing had changed. It took a while before she could comprehend that they could leave if she were nasty and disrespectful enough.
She knew nothing about them other than their names. And to their credit, one family stayed and they did obey her commands and demands, but it was slowly coming apparent that things were NOT going to return to life as it had been. Black children were being educated, they were being sent to schools, and were learning the new freedoms available.
Changes were coming to them all. Not with welcome, not with pleasure for all, but still coming. This southern woman did not want, could not envision the changes initially. But she had to learn to adapt, to change, and if the home was to return to any success, she had to make changes to accomplish it.
We all have to face changes. Some are welcome and exciting—a wedding, a pregnancy, a new job, new home. Changes come with unexpected problems—war, hurricanes, illness, job loss, and a myriad of other reasons which can be devastating. Some are individual to a few persons of a family or community. Some are country or even worldwide. But change comes to us all.
COVID has certainly wrought change. At this point we do not know the changes that may be permanent with the COVID virus and the impact of loss, aloneness, and fear that it has aroused. Will children be able to return to school and the “norms” they do as their school day? Will they be able to return to organized sports through school and community? How about debate team? Science club? Book club?
Will professional basketball be forever played in a dome, a segregated dome, that does not allow the players out and so forth, and no audience? How do you help instill the excitement and approval of an audience cheering and supporting your fantastic athletic endeavor without those live fans?
I cannot imagine Fenway Park or Wrigley Field with no fans. There is a distinct personality to Fenway, and I have a lot of memories from there, and just cannot imagine how the plays can be made without fans trying to catch an errant foul or seeing it slide past Pesky’s pole. The fans are needed by the players, and it is a thrill to see them live and in action.
For now we cannot imagine what might be lasting differences after this pandemic.
People have lost their small businesses, some have been in the neighborhoods for a long time, but just cannot afford the long term closures, families wondering what to do about childcare since schools will be operating at strange and different times, some can work from home, yet many cannot. Medical personal need to be in the OR– to hand off the instruments the surgeon needs; to make the calls to the blood bank to send more blood; to call the lab and say they need a rush on the tissue sample; and a myriad of other duties. Surgery is definitely not a solitary act.
Police and firemen and EMTs need to be at work to spring into action in case of an emergency with your family or mine….but what about the fact this is the day their children cannot be at school and there is no place to bring them. Who can watch them? Are we suddenly going to say it’s okay to leave a 4 and 6 year old alone so parents can go to work?
No, no, and NO. I don’t know the answers. I do know that I am comfortable because God has this, He is in control, and I will be fine. My grandchildren are also old enough to be alone for some hours while their parents work. But many, many others do not have teen and preteen children able to handle some of the alone hours and be responsible enough to get online schooling and such done.
Many need the structure and maybe the frequent correction to keep their mind on studies and what the task at hand is. Often a brief pat on the shoulder for a job well done means so much and boosts self- esteem when a child gets that from a teacher.
We are living and seeing a lot of anger, tension and commotion in this country. And I must say I am ashamed so many young are seeing the violence and intolerance of one for another; seeing the ease with people destroying businesses and so forth. I don’t want my grandchildren to think this is normal, this is an okay way to behave. It is NOT.
But this is another big change that this country is facing, with a myriad of tentacles to it—riots, politics, unrest, anger, and commotion.
We know God has this. We know it will work out for our good. But there are so many who do not know that, and more sadly do not know Him. I am praying that the loud proclamations of unrest and death will cease. I believe it breeds more and more. We need to turn, as a country, to God and ask Him to give us rest. But He has every right to be angry and hurt and disappointed in us. And fair as He is, forgiving as He is, He also needs His people to repent, to honor and to follow Him.
I am standing for Him, praising and thankful for all He has done for me and ‘mybellaviews.’