The Start of a Reckoning
As the coronavirus seems to be receding, many questions will now arise. Some quite surprising. For instance, who – other than the historical greats like St. Benedict, St. John of the Cross, Dostoyevsky, Solzhenitsyn – knew that confinement could have beneficial effects? And in so many ways? Inspiring spiritual reflections. Good practical advice (here, here, here, here). And much (gallows) humor.
And that’s just scratching the surface. We’re not as poor and mean and savage as we sometimes seem, even to ourselves.
A legitimate Christian debate is underway about whether the virus is a “chastisement” for the many sins of the modern world, even in Christian and formerly Christian nations. In the nature of things, we can’t say for sure, unless we receive some message from on high. But whether God sent the plague or has merely permitted it, He must want good things to come from it. And in unexpected ways they already have.
On the personal side, the virus has made me, I’m convinced, healthier than before (antsiness aside): no exhausting professional travel; no crowded planes with their own pathogens; no nights in foreign hotels, and dinners in restaurants; more regular work, food, rest, and exercise; quiet time at home. Even a few better spiritual habits. Among things I once said I’d do “if I had the time,” I’ve learned the Hebrew alphabet (אלף – בית, hard labor, believe me). Simple OT passages are next – unless I forget what I’ve learned before I get around to that.