Selena Day: Showing the love of God post pandemic
I have been pondering on history as we walk into the future of post coronavirus shut down. I see so many differing views concerning the way we should do life in the future.
I have heard many people sharing how, from now on, they will not be shaking hands with others, or will be keeping their distance, or not hugging. People with germ phobias have found the confidence to come out of the closet.
I have made a choice not to judge anyone for their beliefs, whether they wear a mask or not, or whether they distance themselves or not. We cannot know the health concern of every individual.
Saying that, as we move forward, I am reminded of the vivid images from the 1980s, of Princess Diana walking into the AIDS wards of hospitals and sitting with the sick, holding hands with those whom so many were afraid to be around because of the transmittance of the disease. At the time, the AIDS community was being likened to leprosy colonies.
Those images of Princess Diana, this beautiful pristine woman, were impactful and made the world stop and re-evaluate the way it looked at those infected with this disease.
I recently had a conversation with my parents, where they shared their memories of childhood when polio was a threat. They told us how those with the sickness were quarantined, but not those who were healthy. They couldn’t remember a time when our nation shut down due to illness. They had questions, but also, had trust.
I don’t want to follow the dangerous path of conspiracy, for as I am writing this, I understand that many of you will filter the message of my words through your own comprehension of what truth is at this moment.
As differing information is dispersed, I hope we will all question the motives within our hearts as to our own belief or disbelief of that information. To ask ourselves why, what, and how, while we ponder information we receive.
What are the motives and thoughts I have in my mind and heart? Do I want to be right, or do I want to walk in love?
How am I responding to the information given to me? Am I taking it before my creator and asking him to direct my motives, steps, and actions? Am I filtering all the news that has been swirling through my life via television, social media, or word of mouth, through the water of God’s word?
Why am I reacting the way I am to this information? Are my reactions based on fear, knowledge, or wisdom?
As for me, I have put my trust in God. I have used this time to really ask questions concerning where we seem to be going as a nation and where God is leading us as the church. I have spent time praying for our elected officials and praying for my family.
I have pressed into what God was saying and not assuming I know all the answers.
Asking questions like: Is it wise or foolish to follow the majority and just take what has been told to us as fact? Or is it wise or unwise to question those leading us during this time?
These are conversations I have been having recently with some in my life. The one thing I am most disturbed about during this time is the censorship of opposing thoughts, even the very wacky ones. Censorship tends to keep things in the dark.
When voices, or ideas, are allowed to come into the light, the motives are usually revealed, and the darkness is exposed, and repentance happens. Repentance means to turn and go in the opposite direction.
So when a person has believed their whole life that something is true, but that truth has not been allowed to be filtered with true light, it will not be seen as false or distorted. Once it comes into the light and exposed to different questions of reality, truth is uncovered and understood more clearly.
Let me give you an example through a story. As a child, I spent every summer going to the beaches of the Atlantic coast in Florida; my whole extended family would go, aunts, uncles, grandparents, cousins. It has always been some of the happiest memories I carry. For a long time, I could not imagine any place more beautiful than the gray, hard-packed sand beaches along the Atlantic.
As a teen, a friend of mine invited me to go to the Gulf Coast of Florida, sharing with me that it had the most beautiful beaches. The first time I went, we didn’t stay on the beach but had to drive a few minutes to get to the shore. My experience had always been to step out the door of our little motel and see the waves.
My first experience with those beautiful white beaches was not a pleasant one. We stayed on the beach all day, and because it was my first time not being with my mother, I didn’t realize I needed to put on suntan lotion or sunscreen, and because of this, I got very burned. It was the worst sunburn of my life.
Even though I had a wonderful time, I left that trip not feeling very impressed that this beach was better than my beloved Atlantic coast beach and not really caring that I should ever return. Thankfully, because so many others loved those beautiful beaches of the Gulf, I did go back, and as the light of the bright white sand enveloped my heart, I came to see the truth about those beautiful beaches of the gulf.
The Atlantic side has a rugged beauty, and the memories there will always bring me joy. But as I have traveled around the world, for pristine beaches, and clear water, miles, and miles of it, the Gulf Coast has proven its beauty. In fact, the panhandle beaches of Florida are always listed on any documentary as most beautiful beaches in the world. My truth of beach beauty had to be exposed to the light, not just once, but several times, before my heart accepted what the world saw.
Wherever you are in your opinion of going forth, just remember that God is with each of us. If we go forward with love and compassion for one another, we will find that light will expose any darkness, and over time we will come out higher, more durable, and closer to our creator in all things.
So, please forgive me in advance if I hug you. Please have grace with me if I lay my hands on you to pray for you. I believe in contact. But, if you do not, I will respect your choice and stand by your side in hope for the future.
By Selena Day
Selena Day is a motivational speaker and is available to speak at your conference or event. You may contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org http://www.queenliving.org http://facebook.com/queenismsbyselenaday. Photographs courtesy of Selena Day.