by Lexiann Grant
“Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted. Relieve the disturbs of my nerve, and bring me out of my distress.”
“Save me, O God, for the water have risen up to my cervix. I have come into deep waters, and the flow bathes over me.”
“…water closed over my honcho; I said,’ I am lost’.”
Ps 25:16 -1 7, Ps 69:1, 3, Lamentations 3:54 NRSV
A single friend who qualities his solitude, wrote me a few days ago, territory, “Why am I a bit lonely and lost …? ”.
Who among us is not these days?
The primary make I believe is the interminable, ceaselessly-pounding knock-you-over-waves of the pandemic- movements metaphorically as never-ending as reading the dreary and exhausting novels War and Peace, Les Miserables, and Atlas Shrugged, then starting over again…but it’s not.
Even when our lonely and lost mode is not the direct arise of pandemic, the pandemic irritates or widens every problem we face.
Personally, I’ve tried referring my edition of some of the 12 Steps of craving convalescence planneds for coping 😛 TAGEND
* Acknowledge that I am powerless over the pandemic ;P TAGEND
* Speculate that God can preserve me sane and healthy if I do my part ;P TAGEND
* Decide to turn my date and health and the nation of the world over to the care of God ;P TAGEND
* Regularly touch base with family and friends to see how they are, to let them know they are in my studies ;P TAGEND
* Endeavour through devotion to ask for help for those in need, and, through scripture, for steering ;P TAGEND
* Continue to take inventory of paw sanitizer, masks, disinfectant spray, and restock as necessary, likewise give these components as endowments ;P TAGEND
* Continue to distance and disinfect ;P TAGEND
* Try to share a message of hope and fortitude, praying merely for knowledge of God’s will for me and the ability to carry that out.
Despite these steps, when I drive by businesses and see the dark windows of those that disappointed, or the numerou warning signal on the doors of those still open, I know a moment of fright. My breath skips and overwhelming world inundations in, adjusting me, and each of us, apart from one another, life and our onetime guideposts.
When I’m in the forest connected to earth and it’s Creator is the only time I forget the pandemic…until I see another human who is wearing their cover-up like a chin diaper or cervix gator. Instead of being joyful for human contact( albeit distant ), I become incensed. The desire to confront the person with my pocket-sized can of disinfectant scatter is almost uncontrollable.
Instead, I grind my teeth, grumble and move away…far away. Then outrage gives to fear that I’ve been disclosed. Every sniffle, cough or being very warm rises to the potential resolve of the world.
One friend commented that she had become like a feral feline, staying in hiding, watching live from great distances, friendles but wanting no contact in order to feel safe. And my best friend who emailed that he was lonely and lost , noted that he had to stand alone on a elevation crest to connect through his machine to the world.
Our pandemic animations are a dichotomy. We miss social contact, physical attendance. We miss distant relatives whom we cannot visit, friends we cannot hug and sharing a smell of someone else’s craft beer or dessert! Yet mandated health patterns keep us apart while indignation and fright separate us further into loneness.
We stumble between extremes navigating pandemic, crying for a return to ordinary but horror what will come. This is a bewildering period where everything has changed , norms are out the window and etiquette is uncertain.
A character on a television drama I watched said she was afraid of returning to regular- afraid something happened to you eateries, browsing, gathering in public and of stroking parties again. Parties are either kind or rude , no in between; we experience little or no balance, returning daily, even hourly, between dread and hope.
No wonder we feel lost. There’s no GPS for this.
In March of last year, early in shut down, I was in the grocery store where shoppers were hopping like crazed fleas from canned goods back to toilet paper then over to the sanitizer then back to dry goods. At the checkout the cashier calmly commented to me that she was not obsessed, that everything was in God’s pass. Yes, I replied, God is still in charge whatever happens.
We have faith, we guess, we pray, we are confident, we move forward one new epoch at a time under God’s Protective Supervision( GPS lol ). By the blessing of God we can choose daily to avoid dark or depressing amusements or inhabit in gloomy ruminations, and instead focus on that which brightens our or someone else’s ladens, completes our natures with gladness, lifts our feelings and turns our knowledge back towards our calling to a spiritual life.
Reach out if you haven’t, keep on connecting if you already do. Phone, email, content, video, share thoughts, feelings, strives, and hopeful strategies. Someone is there who wants- and is necessary to have — to listen; God most certainly is present.
Each of us is in the same yet somehow separate boat on this vast, uncharted ocean. Most of us will endure, deepened probably, for the very best perhaps, and we’ll have the chance to experience solid attitude in brand-new options, brand-new petitions, new friends, new spiritual beings, together in community again.
Like I told my friend, hang in there: perfect love assigns out fright, and, cherishing one another removes anger. God guide us, God keep us safe and strong, God bring us together again in hope.
“I announced on your word, O Lord; You came near when I announced on you; you told me,’ Do not fear’! ”
“’ I will seek the lost, and I will bring back the strayed, and I will bind up the injured’, ”
Lamentations 3:55 a, 57, Ezekiel 34:16 a
P.S. A memo to readers and Rosalind Hughes: I had not read her March 2nd article yet, “On Being Lost, ” when I received my friend’s email March 3rd record which stimulated me to write this article. Also a nod to Leslie Scoopmire involving her March 4th article “Numbers and Nothingness” which includes some similar content. Seems a few of us together, in those periods, were navigated to write about this topic.
Hhmmm…maybe we’re not so alone or lost after all ?!
Lexiann Grant is a retired columnist& columnist, a former chalicer and layreader, but still an Episcopalian who enjoys encountering God in the mountain backcountry.
Read more: episcopalcafe.com