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How I Found Rest and Respite in the Middle of Chaos

 

Let me be super honest with you.  Right after all this coronavirus mess started (well after it became REAL), I had a big ole meltdown.  It was the Saturday before the governor of Louisiana issued our stay at home order.

Please, no chastising, but initially I was one of those who thought, “Oh this is just another flu.  And I’ve already had the flu this year, so NBD.”

But things started to shift rapidly and the coronavirus got serious.

Schools were shutting down left and right.  The stock market tanked.  Toilet paper, bread and water, gone.

Then, there I was, sitting alone in my adorable cottage. And fear consumed me.

What if I can’t work? (I travel and help teachers be better teachers.  No school = no work.)

What if I lose all my money?

What if I can’t eat?

What if my parents get sick?

What if my renters can’t pay their rent?

What if this continues for months and I can’t see my friends or loved ones and I’m stuck in isolation?

And honestly, this list could go on and on.

I lost it.  I caved to fear.  I was afraid, sad and defeated which then shifted to anger.  Anger directed toward myself. After all the ways the Lord has come through for me in crises, how could I so quickly abandon hope, trust and faith?  What was wrong with me?!

I cried for a long while, and then just went to bed.  Enough.

Luckily, I slept soundly through the night.  And upon waking, pulled out my laptop for church.  And I ended up in church for several hours.  First with FUMC Minden, then Church Unlimited in Corpus Christi, then Saddleback with Rick Warren.  And before I knew it, it was 1 pm, I was still in my bed. I had only had coffee and nothing to eat.  But interestingly enough, I felt a new peace that passes understanding very similar to the day I filed for divorce nearly 10 years ago.

And I decided, in the middle of all this mess, I am only going to do today.

Because today, I can eat.  I can pay my bills.  My parents are healthy. I am healthy.  I have a safe, adorable home to ride out this quarantine.  And since we are not promised tomorrow anyway, why should I be consumed by the fear of what if?

And it was also this day, I realized what a gift this season could be.  Never in our lives have we experienced such, and hopefully we never will again.  Chuck Pierce has called this season a Divine Pause.  I see it as a physical depiction of Psalm 23.  My brother in law once explained a visual picture of lying down in green pastures… the Lord pressing our head into the grass to rest.  You see, it wasn’t so long ago, I was forced into such a season.  I didn’t want to rest. But due to some life-threatening surgical complications, I was forced to take a step back and lie in my own green pasture.

The Saturday I had a meltdown, I found myself saying some of the same things I said when I walked through my divorce and when I walked through my health crisis.

“Lord, give me back my life. I just want things to be normal again.”

“Lord, you saw this coming and you could have prevented it. Why are you letting this happen?! Fix it Jesus. Good grief. SNAP YOUR FINGERS AND LET’S BE DONE WITH THIS for cryin’ out loud.”

And yet in my divorce and in the middle of the coronavirus, rescue did not and is not coming quickly.  But guess what? IT DID COME AND IT WILL COME.

So while we wait for resolution, for the quarantine to be lifted, for our nation and friends to recover, why not relish in a season of rest and respite? One we’ve never seen and will hopefully never see again.

Sleep in a little later.

Take a nap.

Go on a leisurely long walk. Get some sunshine each day.

Call friends and loved ones you haven’t connected with in a while.

Love others well (even from a distance).

Eat healthy.

Read a book.

Write a book.

Weed your garden.

Weed your life.

I’m certain rough days are still ahead.  Yet, I’m also optimistic about our future. I’m convinced SO MUCH GOOD will arise from these ashes.  We will emerge better in ways I suspect we can’t even fathom right now.  I will not allow fear to consume me any longer.

So, while I wait, I will rest in the hope of Jesus in my heart.  I will do today and the things I can presently control.  I will give thanks for the food, water and toilet paper I have in my pantry. 😉 I’m praying without ceasing for a rapid end to the virus, for those who have lost loved ones, for those who are sick and for the rest of us who hurt. All while resting in this Divine Pause.

Will you join me in doing the same? <3

 

Share this Post

  1. Lisa Wellborn says:

    Great message!

  2. Lori says:

    Beautiful and honest, redeeming truth! Thank you for sharing! ❤️

  3. Kathy says:

    Wow. Incredibly well said.
    Is it ok if I share your post?

  4. M Coppin says:

    I love this!! I too went through a couple of days of panic. But, after much prayer and counsel, I took that deep breath, embraced it and accepted the peace. My SIL said it best. “It’s like God sent us all to our rooms for time out to think about what we have done”. I like to add “or haven’t done”. This peaceful time has been a blessing, and I am thankful for it. Thankful for many, many things, but, especially TP. 🙂 Thank you for your words today.

  5. Kristi says:

    Oh girl Amen. You have no idea how much I needed to hear this today. Thank you. Thank you for your perspective and for sharing His word always. You are such a gift.

  6. Kim says:

    Yes to the Devine Pause 🙏🏻❣️

  7. Nancy Dumas says:

    I am so proud of you. You have survived in a beautiful way. Don’t ever lose the optimistic view. I love you as always.

  8. Shannon says:

    WOW! You nailed it, thank you so much. I have not been to fearful but still needed to read your post and feel a peacefulness come over me.

  9. Staci Elliott says:

    Love this.. Thank You

  10. Kim Hearron says:

    Thanks for sharing this Sara. God is good all the time!

  11. Janet Ardoin says:

    Happy Thursday Sara,
    Thank you for your inspiring words. I too had a “meltdown” last week. Just miss my family and church so much. But after that cry, I prayed, Lord, I had my pity party and now I am going strong again.
    Love you my Christian Friend.

  12. Heather Lane says:

    I LOVE this post! I’ve been praying so much, too! I love Rick Warren and have been watching him, too! Love the imagery of Psalms 23!

  13. Sassy Willhite says:

    I love this. Devine Pause truly says it all. Thank you!

  14. Sharmila Vijayan says:

    So beautifully written, Sara, love it! I feel the same that there will probably never be another time where we are able to slow down, reflect on the more important things in life, spend time with family like never before. I seem to have a new perspective. All of this rat race in life is just that when man tries to control things in this world. None of it matters (riches, career, fame, glory, etc..) when God enters the scene and then we know who really is in control. Your health story sounds quite scary. You are such an inspiration and quite the fighter and all this just by reading your posts!

  15. Jeannie S says:

    Thank you for sharing your ♥️. I felt the same way you did at first. But now I’m just embracing this season. Something good will resurrect from ashes of this difficult time. My goal has been to stay home more and not run around chasing “things”. Life does feel a lot more simple and I love that. Have a Blessed Easter!

  16. Flori Zuniga-Gray says:

    Sending you love and prayers! I’m so thankful for your posts.

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