“My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness. … so that your faith would not rest on men’s wisdom, but on God’s power.”
~2 Corinthians 12:9
I’m not afraid of dying. I just don’t want to run out of toilet paper.
It seems absurd to read it that way, but that was the conversation I had with a friend of mine three days before they closed the school where we work for two weeks (at least) due to the coronavirus. The conversation initially started over grocery shopping. It was a Wednesday. I was planning on grocery shopping on Friday after my husband got paid. When another friend mentioned the frenzy in the stores, I asked if she thought I could wait until Friday. She said no. I went to the store that day and bought toilet paper.
In the conversation with the first friend, she said that she hadn’t been freaking out until the people around her started freaking out. I told her as far as I was concerned, the worst that could happen would be that I die. Since I’ve accepted Jesus as my Lord and savior, I’m going to heaven when I die. So the worst that can happen is not the worst. After I dismissed my fear of death, the only other fears were of discomfort and/or inconvenience. Suddenly, toilet paper didn’t seem like such a big deal.
But that’s where our minds go. The scarcity model is our default. The emotion behind this mindset–fear. On the opposite end of the spectrum is faith. How can I lean into faith and away from fear at a time like this when so many people are in a frenzy? I can count my blessings.
Grab the gratitude journal.
Turn around and look at yesterday.
Did God provide for me yesterday?
Well, yeah, but. . .
When was the last time I had to sleep on the street?
Well, never, but. . .
Well, how do I know I’ll have everything I need tomorrow or next week?
We don’t really know, do we? But whatever we’ll have will come from His hand. And everything we have now and have had in the past has also been from Him.
It’s time to start saying thank you.
Thank you, Lord, for this home.
(So many have none. As of December, there were over 62,000 homeless people in NYC alone.)
Thank you for schools and teachers and school buses–and thank you so much for bus drivers!
(So many children are not able to go to school.)
Thank you for clean running water. (One in every three people around the world have none.)
During this tremulous time, let us not focus on scarcity but on God’s abundance and pray for our neighbors in need.