Fragile, But Strong

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful,
I know that full well                                                                                                                                               Psalm 139:14

During this COVID-19 health crisis, we have all been challenged in various ways- in changed lifestyle, in coping with isolation, social frustration, loss of job, perhaps even grieving a death. There will be, and have been, profound changes in our society because of it, some of which will be helpful and culture changing. Currently, however, we are still essentially in the middle of it. Or, perhaps, as Churchill once stated early in World War II, “…Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.”

Wherever we are in it, we must come out of it with positive changes in our attitudes about life and about other people. The very nature of the illness shows itself to be insidious and at times baffling. We know that this virus, as do all living things, tries to prolong its own life. It invades its host and does its best to reproduce itself and proliferate.

Our bodies, “fearfully and wonderfully made” as the Bible says, fight this virus, and all such invaders with ferocity. The fact that some people are able to fight off the virus from the brink of death is amazing and gratifying. The fact that some people, seemingly healthy and vigorous, succumb to it, is terribly sad and discouraging.

Our bodies are incredibly strong and formidable, and at the same time, fragile. That same phenomenon exists in all types of assaults on our bodies. My daughter, a trauma surgeon, works on people who have been grievously wounded, and sees them recover from massive injuries. At the same time, some people will die from a seemingly innocuous little infection that turns into a septic disaster.

Life is precious, life is a gift. We had nothing to do with our conception, our life was just…a gift. So, what do we do with this precious gift we have been given? We cherish it, we try to preserve it, and we are grateful for it. We honor it fully by finding meaning in it greater than ourselves.

So, COVID-19, you came to destroy by overrunning our bodies. We respond with an increasing appreciation for life, and we will overcome this crisis.

Prayer: Thank you Lord for the gift of life. Our bodies, fragile and strong, are amazing. Help us to persevere and grow in that life you give us, Amen.

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