The good news is that your emotions are God’s gift.
Anger tells us to do something about something that has gone south or sideways.
Anxiety is the natural outcome of uncertainty. It pushes us to prepare. But, we are currently uncertain what we are asking. That moves anxiety to another level.
How did I get on another planet?
What happened to my life?
Where does this end?
Could that vaccination Bill Gates is talking about be the Mark of the Beast? The “mark” that determines whether I work or not? Only access to fresh air and food? (Revelation 13:16-18)
Why do all of my edges and margins feel blurred and squishy?
While we are wearing masks and gloves, are blinders being surreptitiously placed over our eyes?
Whose counsel can I trust? Do the conspiracies have any basis?
I think anxiety is the best initial reaction to what we are thinking and asking. If this crisis doesn’t cause us to be a bit anxious we are not paying attention. But while you take your meds prepare.
The TIME magazine people have been publishing a series about science. The Science of Losing Weight, Science of Gender. My favorite is Science of Success. It is helpful. Most of the ink and words busily say that our Emotional Quotient makes the biggest difference.
We are being told to make all decisions based on science. Governors, news people and critics of our government urge us to ignore feelings and obey only the equations and lab-centered speculations. The assumption is that emotions are always out-of-control and never to be trusted or listened to. It is true that our emotions have been vulnerable to error since the Fall in Genesis. Bible teachers and preachers warn us to beware that emotions can be taught and misinformed. Of course! Absolutely! But what are we to do with “go with your gut!”? Love is not lab-driven predictabile or repeatable in controlled tests.
We must listen to the health scientists. “Must” being the operative word. Dr. Oz and Dr. Phil are also scientists who are saying current isolation concerns are not just about psychological deterioration, but will cause the physical body to break down. Dr. Phil is adamant that the current approach is as deadly as the virus. Loneliness is a killer.
I am asking which of the conspiracies have truth enclosed. Our Constitutional government and the free market system have enemies. (Even paranoids have real enemies.) Our sense of self is shaped and maintained by interaction, self-awareness knowing what is and who is safe. Yet, many of those edges and margins have been removed from us. We can become blurred and squishy. (George, don’t go squishy. Margaret) Let me explain.
Carole and I often ask each other about movies or TV plots, “Is that the way you would have written it?” Yesterday we watched a movie that left the conclusion to us—no closure. We don’t know if the person survived surgery or if the mother ever got the relationship with her kids straightened out. Unsettling!
It may be that I am slightly bent or it may be because of my imagination. I can get lost in a movie or story. (When I saw “Back to the Future,” they had to send a rescue party to get me.) With so much time in front of screens, the possibility of getting lost and losing touch with self and reality is a threat. Therefore, staying in the moment or having lifelines to the moment is necessary and healthy.
A health-care management official says that after this crisis is over we will have lots of health-care workers suffering with PTSD. With opening our country again, I wonder how many will opt to stay hunkered down because of something akin to post trauma. With the forecast that everything will be changed—we will never go back to the old normal, I’m not too happy. I wonder if while the nation was closed for repair, some used the opportunity to remodel it according to their agenda and design. While we were distracted or our attention diverted…? I’m wondering if we will be in any emotional, mental and spiritual condition to find and then fill our places in the new normal.
I kinda liked the old normal, like the woman I’m living with. Carole and I are negotiating with God about Heaven. No marriage in heaven? Whose idea was that? Maybe a suburb where she and I can be together? “Never be the same” doesn’t sit well—makes me nervous. So I’m putting together a plan.
I really want to be a solutionary—a bringer of good news: a plan to keep body, soul, spirit in shape. During another crisis, researchers found that nurses were the most apt of all vocations/callings to burn out. One of our teacher friends spoke of her distress over her students not being in school and the broad scope of what they are missing. It is that commitment and urgency that makes us vulnerable. A health-plan for body, soul, spirit was suggested for nurses. We adapted their outline to our audiences with a seminar, “Closed For Repair,” that we used in a couple hundred settings. Over the next few days, I want to share the updated, printed version with you at Benton Quest House. You will receive notification and link via email and Facebook.
©2020 D. Dean Benton
Good news & Good News—bringin’ it!