Today turned out to be a big day for me. I should probably keep this on the down-low but it is too good to keep to myself. I went to the store for printer ink and on a whim went down the always empty toilet paper aisle. It was pretty empty but there on the empty shelf were a few lone packs of toilet paper. And they were the big packs and they were my regular pre COVID-19 brand! I could not believe my eyes. Was I dreaming?
So I confess to you that as I made my purchase and left the store I felt I had just conquered the world. I felt as though I had struck gold or won the lottery. I felt victorious and secure! In what kind of a world does a formerly mundane, routine, everyday purchase become a highlight of one’s week? (maybe of the month, remember every day is Groundhog Day) Who knew toilet paper had that much power? I’m assuming all jobs having to do with toilet paper production and distribution are considered “essential.” Talk about your job security – those are some super secure jobs – actually the securest of jobs.
In other news, my magnolia’s blooms were bitten by the frost and she died a premature death this spring. But the red bud and some other pink flowering trees are everywhere I look, in full bloom and beautiful. The white lacy pear blossoms have given way to green buds ready to burst forth. When something dies something else comes alive. Everything has its season. I am witnessing this on my daily walks.
Spring has arrived in full force. COVID-19 has no power over creation. The sequence of the seasons still stands. The words of Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 play over and over in my mind as I wonder when these days of sheltering in place will come to an end?
“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain, a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.”
Seems like those words cover about everything. I am hopeful that we will have times of planting and of building and of gathering and of laughing and of dancing and of healing and of embracing and of mending and of peace in the days yet to come.
For now, I feel like the apostle Paul felt when he wrote these words in 2 Corinthians 4:8-10,
“We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.”
I have said before that we are in a race and someone keeps moving the finish line, farther and farther each time, until we find ourselves running a race in which there is no finish line. This may be true, but I want to be able to say with the apostle Paul these words from 2 Timothy 4:7,
“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”
sincerely, Grace Day