10 Ways Life Simply Wasn’t Working before COVID-19
Before Coronavirus took over our lives, there was so much that went unnoticed and unseen. How we lived our daily lives was ripped apart and turned into something completely different. The interactions and relationships that we had with other people were taken for granted. All of this in 2020 has unveiled our eyes to areas of our lives that needed some much needed cultivating if we were to sustain them.
2020 has felt like some sort of cosmic joke. If it wasn’t one thing, it was something else. One story after another, every day of turning on the news or social media has felt like spinning the wheel of chance with some new terrifying problem on every block.
I joked with a few friends earlier this week that I should have chosen a different word for 2020. At the end of last year, I was optimistic. A year that ended roughly would surely get better as I turned the page, right?
I’m kicking myself now for even thinking 2019 was terrible. It was angelic compared to 2020.
My word for this year was “joy.” Joy, because I felt sure that was the word God put on my heart and mind. I’m just not seeing it yet.
I think of a garden. How they begin and how they are sustained. If the ground is not correctly tilled and cultivated, if the soil isn’t nutrient-rich enough, what we plant will never be sustained.
In a world that feels like it is coming to an end, what if God is revealing a remaking of us into something that can be sustained?
What if 2020 is forming us into believers who will sustain?
Before Coronavirus took over our lives, there was so much that went unnoticed and unseen. How we lived our daily lives was ripped apart and turned into something completely different. The interactions and relationships that we had with other people were taken for granted. How we lived out our freedoms, shopped for groceries, and spent our time, all changed.
All of this in 2020 has unveiled our eyes to areas of our lives that needed some much needed cultivating if we were to sustain them.
Things were not working before this; change is necessary. Doing better is vital if we are to learn anything from what we see day in and day out.
Here are 10 ways life simply didn't work for us before COVID-19:
1. Our selfishness wasn’t working.
Look around. It is no secret that we live in a self-centered culture. Everything we say and do reflects the attitude that others don’t matter in our world. Through all of this, we have seen that we are not the only ones. It has changed our view of people, hopefully for the better.
2. Our schedules weren’t working.
We never stop moving, we struggle to put the phone down, or to still our hearts and minds. Collectively, Coronavirus changed our schedules. It removed our constant busyness and replaced it with forced stillness. It is a place where we have no choice but to listen, rearrange, and choose what is better.
3. Our habits weren’t working.
One thing I noticed most after Coronavirus was the number of people out walking through our neighborhood. Most of them I had never seen before, but suddenly they were all walking. It’s revealed that our healthy habits were lacking. All the walking we did during the Pandemic needs to be a habit we continue in the days ahead.
4. Our overcommitting lifestyle wasn’t working.
We were all stretched thin. Committing to more than our capacities allowed. There was no margin for purpose. There was no margin for what mattered.
5. Our rest wasn’t working.
Thanks to our overcommitment and schedules, we failed to truly rest. Close off the noise and seek worship and rest through a sabbath time. We cannot go back to the place where we are robbed of the gift of rest. God ordained rest because He knew that we would need it.
6. Our financial awareness wasn’t working.
For many, the Coronavirus meant the ending of livelihoods, delayed paychecks, and struggle. If you were used to a steady income and unprepared to be without a job, our financial awareness was not working.
7. Our families weren’t working.
I could count the number of days on one hand that we sat around the dinner table each night before quarantine became a thing. Suddenly, I recognized the gift of time with my family that I took for granted before all of this happened.
8. Our spiritual walks weren’t working.
This season revealed how very far from God we were. It opened our eyes to the fact that our Bibles and prayer journals remained closed when needed. We became aware of what we needed when times became challenging and hard. The evidence is the skyrocketing of Bible sales at the beginning of the Pandemic.
9. Our prayer lives weren’t working.
Maybe it wasn’t just your spiritual walk and time in the word that was lacking. Perhaps you discovered, like most, that our prayer lives weren’t working either. Suddenly our eyes were open to the fact that we had not prayed in months or weeks. Maybe you realized that you were quick to take your problems to others before you ever took them to God.
10. Our priorities weren’t working.
Everything it feels like we were doing in life wasn’t working toward something lasting, something meaningful and bigger than ourselves, our daily to dos and personal achievements. Our priorities were warped and twisted. What was put on the back burner suddenly found its rightful place.
That garden I told you about, the one that cannot be sustained without the proper work first, this is it. If anything lasting will come from 2020, it will be because God used each event to till, cultivate, and pour needed nutrients into the soil to create growth that will last. Not perennial flowers that look beautiful for a moment and then fade.
Just like in the Parable of the Sower in Matthew 13:1-23, the seeds that fall on unprepared ground will not produce fruit, it will not last. God is doing a work; we can all agree on that. He is doing something. How has He cultivated the ground under your feet to bring you to a place that will be sustained for the long obedience?
While we may cringe to think of what else could come from 2020, we may just find joy yet—joy in seeing that God is building something in us that will last.
Photo Credit: © Getty Images/Tero Vesalainen
Michelle Rabon is a wife and homeschooling mom of three who feels called to help women thrive in their walk with Jesus every day. In 2012, she started Displaying Grace, a ministry that is focused on helping women engage with God’s Word. Michelle has also served in women’s ministry for the past five years seeking to equip women in the local church through Bible study. When she is not writing or teaching, she enjoys reading, being close to the ocean, and drinking a lot of coffee.
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