Wednesday, April 1, 2020

“Heart and Soul”

And what is so rare as a day in June?
     Then, if ever, come perfect days…

This photograph of St. Helen’s Quiet Garden, resplendent with glorious June blooms, is as far as I want to go with ‘April Fool’s’ this year.   

In Matthew Chapter 6, Jesus speaks to our tendency to worry, a natural human response to the stresses of these times. To his disciples he says “Do not worry about your life…Look at the birds of the air…Are you not of more value that they?…Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you that even Solomon in all his glory was not clothed like one of these. ..So do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring worries of its own. Today’s trouble is enough for today.”

“One day at a time” is a sound principle for living in self-isolation.  This attitude is not simply ‘pollyanna’(see note); it does not dismiss the complex reality with which we are faced but perhaps it can make it more manageable.  Anxiety is only one of the issues with which we are dealing.  Fear is present. Worry for others’ safety, particularly those at a distance. Boredom and disappointment, for some. Frustration, annoyance or weariness, for others. Anger at those who are not practicing physical distancing, who put themselves, their families and the whole community at further risk or indeed, at those who are being critical of how we are coping.    

It has been said that a crisis like this brings out the best in people and the worst.  We usually mean that in terms of interaction with others.  But is it not true of ourselves as well?   Yes, these are challenging days, but we can dig deep within ourselves and rise to meet them.  And there will be beauty and health and growth in the days to come.

The photo to the right is of the first spring shoots in our Quiet Garden, rising to meet the warmth of the sun!

Note: pollyanna: a person characterized by irrepressible optimism and a tendency to find good in everything. From the 1913 children’s classic by Eleanor H. Porter