How’s the lockdown/quarantine thing going for you? Do you find that some days are better than others? Have you undertaken some home projects, like cleaning out a closet or organizing the pantry? Are you running out of things to do & hoping this adventure comes to an end sooner rather than later?
My lockdown adventure has mixed results depending on the day. There are some days when I’m glad to snuggle into my couch and tuck into a writing project and there are some days when I want to steal the “get out of jail” card from the Monopoly set and “get the heck out of Dodge”!
To be sure, this lockdown thing is a unique experience for most of us and maybe we’ve all had some moments of discouragement, anxiety, fear, frustration, reflection, unexpected fun, questions and fulfillment. At our house, we’ve done some cleaning and organizing projects, along with cooking experiments, puzzles, learning new skills, reading and some binge watching, to name a few things. I’m also happy that the hummingbirds are starting to come around again. I like hearing their buzz through the trees and seeing their hesitant sips from our feeders.
As I think about this lockdown thing, I’m reminded of Paul living the end of his life in a lockdown mode, being imprisoned for multiple years in some awful conditions. Indeed, the end of the book of Acts is Paul with fellow prisoners on a ship almost drowning in a horrible storm. When I look at Paul and how he navigated his lockdown experience, there are lots of lessons we can consider for our own quarantine adventure.
Here are some lessons that might be helpful in this season:
1 – Getting stuff done: there’s lots of satisfaction in getting things done that we’ve put off for awhile. Additionally, during Paul’s imprisonment, he wrote four of the thirteen books of the New Testament attributed to him. Lockdowns can be very productive seasons!
2 – Growing in God: we can choose to keep a tighter focus on God, deepen our roots and grow our trust in God during this season. I see that Paul made this choice from his words in Philippians 3:7-8, “But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ. More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ.”
3 – Interior Strength: this experience seems to require an internal strength that is probably different than the fortitude we’ve needed in the past. I find myself needing more internal strength to regulate my attitudes, keep a healthy perspective, be kind with my family when I feel impatient and cranky, along with strength to look at some not so bueno stuff in my soul. To this end, I’m very encouraged with Ephesians 3:16, where Paul prays from prison “that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man.”
Some additional lessons I’m getting from this lockdown experience include: greater flexibility with schedules and navigating workloads, a heightened appreciation for true friends, valuing consistency and routines and doing daily walks for lots of healthy benefits. There are lots of good things we can learn from this lockdown season!