Of Quarantines and Knowing God

Peru’s quarantine is set to end this Sunday. Does that sound exciting? It would, but all our friends and neighbors are readying themselves for another extension. From what I’ve gathered, there’s no official word, but the rumors have it that the president will extend the quarantine measures. However, some of the rumors say that various businesses will be allowed to reopen.

Yesterday when I was burning trash, I found a McDonald’s box. I think it was from the McNuggets Abbey and I got in Cusco to celebrate finishing our week at Wiracocha Spanish school. (Yes, it’s been awhile since all the trash was burned.) I had a sudden urge to declare that once the quarantine is lifted, I’m taking the family to Cusco to McDonald’s to celebrate! We have a gift of money set aside from Mr. Bill just for that.

But I decided not to declare it, at least not out loud. Who knows how long this lockdown will last? No one, of course. How does that make you feel?

I feel somewhat useless at times, honestly. My whole job description, as such, is about other people. What does one do when that’s taken away? I’m not depressed or discouraged, but it is having an effect of making me listless. It does offer an opportunity to develop patience and such, though.

I’m glad the quarantine has had a good effect on Steph. She’s always been a lovely lady, but something about this last month has brought out a measure of joy and laughter in her that some would say is out of character for her. She’s much more fun that she was before. [Insert hasty explanation that she was fun and exciting and beautiful before, too. Check.]

That’s one of the great things about Steph: tough times make her better. I think tough times make me better eventually, but I can be a bit of an Eeyore along the way. Perhaps I’m growing some in that. My gray hairs aren’t for nothing. But I really could do better.

One thing I’m grateful for is the peace and joy we have as believers. Because this world isn’t our home, our fulfillment isn’t based on quarantines or not-quarantines. Once in awhile I peek into what people are saying about all that’s going on in the States with relation to quarantines and such, and I see a lot of anger, frustration, sadness, complaining, demanding of rights, and so on. It makes me feel sad that people don’t know the God I know; although, many say they do.

It’s like a friend I once knew who had a rather large build, a somewhat quick temper, a fairly sharp mind, and the reputation from his teenage years to go along with it. It was an intimidating combination for many people, scaring them away from him. But I knew him. He was fun and humorous and caring, more like a big teddy bear than an ogre.

Knowing God is like that. Once you really have a relationship with Him, you discover that He truly is love. You find that the joy of the Lord is a strength you can draw from. He’ll give you songs in the night and cover you with His care. There’s nothing to fear when you’re with Him.

That means I don’t have to be an Eeyore. I don’t have to worry about the water situation or the quarantine. I don’t have to be angry or afraid. I know I’m not perfect, but God is. And He’s working on making me more like Jesus–if I let Him.

These are just some random thoughts that have been bouncing around in my head. I’m sorry if they aren’t completely cohesive. But I want to encourage you. If you’re feeling grumpy or angry or sad or afraid or [other negative feeling], get to know the Lord better. He’ll make your world brand new.

“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid. Remember what I told you: I am going away, but I will come back to you again. If you really loved me, you would be happy that I am going to the Father, who is greater than I am.”

(John‬ ‭14:27-28‬ ‭NLT‬‬)

Unloading groceries… Steph went to town and back again before we were finished with breakfast.
Seth was thrilled she bought soap.
Walter is crawling over to eat a dropped kiwi.

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