What Am I Waiting For?
I opened my laptop to write my first blog post of 2021 which also happens to be my second blog post (total) on this page. I had just had a meeting with my supervisor and had written down some fun and creative ideas for this year’s blog, but when I sat down to actually write what I had originally planned, it just didn’t feel right.
The reason I point out that this is only my second blog post on this page is for a significant reason. In the fall of 2020, I became sick with something called vestibular dysfunction. Summed up, vestibular dysfunction means that the communication lines between my inner ear and brain were not working, and because of this, I felt like I had non-stop motion sickness for 23 days. I could not read, could not go on my phone or watch TV, could not walk up and down stairs on my own, and could hardly go a few minutes sitting up before needing to lie down. The worst part of this time for me though, was the fact that I felt like I had zero control over my life. Everything that I did or did not do depended heavily on the people around me. If no one came to help me up the stairs, I stayed downstairs. If everyone in the room was on their phones, I just sat there. If I wanted to communicate to anyone not presently with me, I had to use Siri and other voice commands on my phone to do so. Anything and everything I wanted to do by myself, I couldn’t, and on top of that, I had no answers as to when my sickness would end.
Quite a bit of the “Covid lifestyle” feels exactly like this. There are certain freedoms that we used to have that have been taken away from us for an unforeseeable amount of time. Every time we leave our homes, we are reminded of the fact that life is not what it is supposed to be, that we don’t have the same amount of control as we once felt like we had, and that what we used to depend on (normal life) has been snatched out of our hands.
Looking at this depressing mess that has become our “new normal”, we have two choices. One is to continue to hold onto the not-so-certain hope that things will soon change and we will all go back to living our lives as we once did (i.e. hanging onto every word that the restrictions say as if they are what determines our freedom). The second is to grab onto the one sure thing that will never change no matter how many restrictions are added or lifted – the Kingdom of Heaven.
I remember sitting in one of Professor Arlene’s classes where we were talking about the hope that the Kingdom of Heaven provides. Professor Arlene was discussing how we all struggle with grounding ourselves in times of chaos, and not knowing who we are or where to turn to when times get tough. After letting that thought sit with the class for a moment, she shared with us a question and answer that she and her husband would often use. The question was, “Who are you and where do you live?” But the answer was what stuck with me, “I am one in whom Christ dwells. I live in the Kingdom of a God who loves me, and that Kingdom is never in trouble.”
And that’s it. That’s the climax of the story, the hope of all hopes, the reason for our very existence.
I am one in whom Christ dwells.
I live in the Kingdom of a God who loves me.
And that Kingdom is never in trouble.
No matter what the next Covid announcement is, no matter what else is going on in our lives, the Kingdom of Heaven is never in trouble. That is a hope that we can wait patiently in. Through every trial of life, whether it’s a pandemic or a flat tire or a failed class, if we keep our focus on this hope of the Kingdom of Heaven, we can endure through every circumstance.
“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, NIV (SBC’s theme verse for 2020-2021)
Emma is a student blogger for 2020-2021. She is in her second of three years in the BA Christian Studies program with a focus in Worship Arts.