No doubt you’ve read several such lists on the internet where authors highlight key reflections they’ve discovered as a result of the interruptions from the COVID-19. “What the pandemic has taught me about life, society, business and so forth...”
There’s even a list the virus has taught us about the planet. From my perspective, such lists have been around a long, long time, at least in part. So I put together a short list of what I’m calling ‘life lessons’ that have roots in the Bible that some of us are rediscovering during this pandemic.
a) People are social beings and from the earliest of days were made to be relational; Adam with Eve, with God and all who would come thereafter. (Genesis 1-3).
b) There is but one earth to sustain the peoples of the world. We are called to honor and treasure it for the next generation as God’s stewards and caretakers. (Revelation 21).
c) There is a mystery to life that exceeds humankind’s best efforts to control and/or fully understand it. (Psalm 8).
d) In as much as nobody wants to see another die, death is a part of life. (Deuteronomy 30:15).
e) Nations are still challenged with learning how to live in peace as one humanity. (Psalms 2 & 133).
f) Kindness, love and generosity in our communities make the world a better place. (Romans 12).
g) It is good for families to spend quality, creative time together. (Mark 3:31-35).
h) Life is not a picnic nor is it fair. Challenges and hardships of all kinds, be they acts of God or foibles of mankind, have always been around. But we walk not alone nor by sight, but by faith that God has a plan and has promised repeatedly to join us in this journey of life. (2 Corinthians 5).
i) People are capable of believing a whole host of notions, regardless of empirical facts or evidence. (2 Kings).
j) God’s desire is that all people would have life in abundance, and for this reason Jesus came. (John 10).
h) People need others of varying beliefs and world views in order to bring out the best in each other. (Proverbs 27:17).
I’m sure with more time I might add more to this list, or even write two or three alternative lists. But I wanted to connect the messages of the Bible with the reality of life today. Let me encourage you to take some time this week to reflect on lessons you have learned these past six months. And despite the hardships, challenges and disruptions, may you find some reasons to give thanks for the blessings you do have.
Paul writes in Philippians, “Finally beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. Keep on doing the things that you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you. (chapters 4:8-9).
The Rev. Keith Anderson is pastor of First Lutheran Church.
Perspectives is a regular column sponsored and written by members of the Ketchikan Ministerial Association.