It’s starting to feel to me as though the entire nation may be rushing back into life as it used to be, as though the pandemic’s effects are now past. Two patterns seem to be emerging: ❶Letting down our guard about this plague, even though it’s still vigorously active—here and all over the world. ❷ Forgetting that the way we used to live was creating its own long-term problems.
The second pattern concerns me the most. If most of us hurry back to the lifestyles we left behind 15 months ago, we may charge headlong toward elements of life that were not good for us. The privation of our sequestration may lead us to believe that we now deserve the pleasures that were not available then. We may forget pre-pandemic lifestyle priorities like climate change, social justice, spiritual depth or simplicity.
Now that most of us are vaccinated—and presumably immune from the effects of the COVID-19 virus—we have good reasons to celebrate. We want to set aside the fears and anxieties that plagued our souls during these many months. We’re tired of being cautious, and want to enjoy our lives again.
These are all understandable reactions to what we’ve gone through. But we don’t have to hurry toward a new hedonism. That lifestyle attitude characterized our country after the 1918 flu epidemic—“The Roaring Twenties” that led to the Great Depression. Not something we want to happen again.
Like you, I’m glad to be out from under mandates and shutdowns. But I’m not quite ready to rush back into ways of living that gave me pause before COVID. And I’m not going to set aside the benefits of facing this epidemic, quiet gifts God has offered.
So for me right now: Not so fast….