by Alan Bailey
Many people—millions in fact, have entered a new experience. All caused by an unexpected virus coming on the scene. Without much warning, we have been halted in our tracks, so much of our usual routines scrapped and four walls hemming us in. These are necessary measures of course if we are to escape a pandemic out of control. But what is happening to us??
Our pleasant chats at the shops have gone. Our diary dates have had a line drawn through them. The kids are home wandering around as if lost. No more outings to the pictures, to the football or almost to any sport at all. Hey! What are we supposed to do with ourselves?
Lessons are online, so that will soak up some time. The apps on the phone are promising, giving us cause to fiddle. Even some of those ho-hum TV shows are gaining a greater audience.
But here is an important question. When all is quiet and you're all alone, devices switched off, what do you think about?
I have a feeling that many modern people don't think about anything in particular. You see, we live in an age when thinking is done for us. We are fed with information from the media and the government, the computer tells us how to spell, Google will tell us anything we want to know. And now, we are taught like children how to behave in a pandemic.
Maybe at a time like this, when a lot of normal is suspended and a new normal prevails, an opportunity has opened up for us to think. Not to concern ourselves for the moment with food and clothes and cars and dogs and washing and buying and all the everyday things that hold our attention, but to stop and ask big questions. Like, "Why am I here?" "What is life all about?" "Is there some purpose to it, or is it all empty?"
I know these are matters strictly avoided by the masses when things are going along normally. But what if God is there, fully aware of each one of us and seeing us in a broken relationship with Himself? This gets serious. Living life day-by-day, ignoring God and His rule, rebelling against divine authority, is not good. It is our greatest sin.
A new experience
To be out of touch with God, to be out of favour with Him. It has large ramifications. Note these words: "We have all gone astray like sheep; we have turned all of us to our own way" (The Bible, Isaiah 53:6). We are accountable for this. Another Bible verse, Hebrews 9:27, says: "It is appointed for men to die once, and after this the judgment."
How thankful we should be for the Saviour God has provided for us. What Jesus did on the cross brings pardon and forgiveness within reach.
Perhaps this time of quietness may just be the right time for getting right with God and beginning a new life, a new experience. It is a prayer away. With a sincere heart, seek the Saviour who lives today and saves by His mighty power.•