I’m almost embarrassed to admit what prompted me to set foot in a grocery store again after two months of home delivery. It wasn’t increased feelings of security about entering public places or statistics about a decrease in COVID-19 cases in my area.
It was queso — pure and simple.
The queso my family loves doesn’t appear on Costco’s site for home delivery, and believe me, I check every time I place an order. It was when my desire for queso overwhelmed my fear of going into the store that I put on the required mask (my first time) and ventured inside for the hour before closing on a Friday night.
What did I find? More queso than I’d ever seen on the shelf (I tried to explain to a passing employee that this was because it wasn’t available for home delivery) and a stronger sense of peace than I would have thought possible a month or two ago.
I roamed the store looking for special treats for my teens. I restocked the ice cream bars I’d become fond of in the last month. I bought plants for the small raised bed my children and husband built for me on Mother’s Day.
I spoke to everyone because it made me sad the last time I was here when people seemed afraid of each other.
The mask kept me from touching my face (which seems to be a problem for most of us), but I removed it as I walked out of the store. I’m careful, but I no longer clean our groceries like a surgeon sterilizing scalpels before an operation.
Regaining my sense of peace has come slowly, bit by bit, in stages. It began on the night I wrote about in my last post, when I had done everything I could and knew it was time to trust God to do the rest.
Recently I spent a spring afternoon sitting on the screened back porch of a friend’s new house. She moved the week before everything started shutting down and was ready to spend some time with friends. Four of us had a lovely afternoon of laughter and face-to-face conversation in place of the active Marco Polo app chat we had relied on recently.
The next week those friends and I began a Bible study and also my regular book club met, both on the same day. That weekend my husband and I and our three teens gathered with three of our older children and their children, my sister and niece. It felt good to be with our people again.
When my teens wanted to visit one of our older sons and his family, who live two states away, I realized out-of-state travel was still beyond my comfort zone. Eating in the car is one thing, but how easy would it be to find a bathroom? We met in the state between us and although I was anxious in the beginning, we always had access to what we needed. By the end of the trip, I’d regained a little more of the peace my spirit craved.
Each step — increased trust in God, time spent with friends and family, traveling further from home — has subdued my unease and helped to restore my calm.
I don’t live in a bubble or doubt the virus is real. My mother-in-law had it and has recovered and an employee at the manufacturing facility my husband manages tested positive and has now tested negative.
I think God expects us to use the good sense He gave us — I take vitamins, try to boost my immune system and protect my gut health, avoid large crowds, and sanitize my hands when needed — but His Word reminds me He doesn’t intend for us to live in fear.
I may not escape COVID-19, but I refuse to be enslaved by the fear of it.
For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
2 Timothy 1:7 (KJV)
How are you now and how has your outlook on COVID-19 changed with time?
God's Word reminds us He doesn’t intend for us to live in fear. -@DawnMHSH: Click To Tweet