There have been some positive outcomes of being forced into new ways of working. One has been the opportunity to communicate more often with our Global Partners. Another has been more time to think and reflect.
For the most part, we in the western world have access to high speed internet and various forms of viewing platforms to entertain us. We have the luxury of our own rooms and multiple spaces and gardens to retire to. But not so our partners. It got me thinking...
What is life really like for some of our Church family in this C-19 lockdown?
I have family members in Uganda, where lockdown has been extended for another two to three weeks. I have had regular updates from a few of our partners in Mid and East Africa. From all I'm hearing, the impact of the lockdown measures continues to be devastating. People have no food, no jobs, no way to get around and those living in densely populated areas have nowhere to go. Keith and Lyn in Zambia shared with me that it’s almost impossible to enforce social distancing when you live in a township.
I find it difficult to sleep comfortably at night knowing that the people that we know and love are really struggling. The many pastors, church workers and individuals who have visited us here, are starving! That is a harsh reality and doesn’t sit comfortably with me, especially when I think of how, in Ireland, many of us have been worried about how much more we can fit in our freezers. I’ve personally been challenged in my giving, and how I spend our family finances; the Lord has challenged my heart to give, even when it’s sacrificial.
On a more positive note, our brothers and sisters in other parts of the world have developed great resilience and optimism in the face of yet more challenges. I have a lot to learn from them. They are standing on the unshakeable truths of God’s Word. God has been faithful in the past and He will continue to be faithful in providing for their needs.
Maybe we are the ones God wants to use, so that we can be a blessing to those we hold dear? Maybe He wants to shake us to wake us, as we live through these crazy days?
These are just some of the 'deep and meaningfuls’ going through my mind as we approach Week 10 of lockdown.