Finding something positive to smile about during these historic times may be difficult.
As I write I think of the Canadian Broadway performer Nick Cordero, who fought valiantly for his life for many months. He has now passed away, leaving a wife and young child, and a world in mourning. The word 'difficult' understates our losses indeed. Undoubtedly each of you have a story of how the Corona Virus has affected your life in some way.
I didn't smile when I heard our youngest daughter could not come home from overseas. I didn't smile when I heard our eldest daughter may be stuck working at a hospital, away from her little family, and frontline susceptible to disease. I didn't smile when our son and future daughter-n-law had to postpone their much anticipated wedding. I could barely breath knowing we couldn't see our grandchildren, and for how long would that be?
But gifts come in all shapes and sizes, and this one came with the cruel wrappings of masks and hand sanitizer, job uncertainty, and isolation. I waited, I cried and peered deep into my Heavenly Father's eyes. I peeled back the layers of pain and anxiety, and time ...to discover the gift of gratitude.
Never before have I been so grateful to wake up in the morning and hear the summer birds sing. This June I didn't miss a bud or bloom on the lilac tree. No one had to remind me their distinct fragrance and colour is short lived. I took the time to search the neighbourhood for a rare deep purple lilac bush I noticed years ago. I wanted to share its beauty with my husband.
I know his face better than ever before, each new wrinkle, each new silver hair on his head. I am grateful for our time together, new traditions of walking and playing cards after dinner.
Most of all I am grateful for how this abrupt halt in humanity's frenzied pace has given us all another chance...
to look into each other's eyes,
to notice our distinct flavour and colour and hue,
to remember our unique footprint on the earth is fleeting,
to celebrate each person's rare beauty.
O Lord, I am grateful.