I have told you these things, that in me you may have peace. In the world you have trouble; but cheer up! I have overcome the world.

John 16:33 (WEB)

Whoever thought we would be in lockdown for five months? I happened to be returning from a trip to see my granddaughter in California on March 1, never suspecting that all travel would cease until further notice. I thought I would be headed back for a high school graduation in May. Yet one thing after another was cancelled and we stayed home. They call this the cancel culture but I didn’t expect it to be like this!

I heard a pastor say that he was deleting the word “normal” from his vocabulary. That’s probably a good idea because it helps us look at what we have today rather than looking back at what we will never be again. Chuck Swindoll posted this little couplet which gives us some direction as we fumble around in a world of the unsure, unknown, and unlikely.

Life is mostly froth and bubble. Two things stand in stone.
Kindness in another’s trouble. Courage in your own.

There is just not much fun happening these days. We do the essential shopping, doctor’s appointments, and personal maintenance but the days where we met for a movie and dinner are out. However,¬†two words in the verse above — cheer up — caught my attention as I struggle with joy. Jesus knew that we would have trouble. He warned us so we would be ready.

One thing I know is that this will not last forever. We will adapt, create, grow, strengthen, and be something new. Remember, the seed has to go into the earth where it is dark, cold, and damp so that it can break apart and begin to put out a shoot of growth, looking nothing like it did at the beginning. May we show kindness and courage during this season of growth so that God’s purpose will be accomplished and we will bloom in new ways.

Cheer up!