How in the world can you handle all of the craziness of a global pandemic, with all of the demands on your family from homeschooling and mask-making to locating toilet paper and working from home (or being laid off)? Now add the stress and logistics of a divorce to the mix? How on earth can anyone even ATTEMPT to handle all of this?
If anyone has the answers, they are lying!!!
SO, why should I even attempt to write down my thoughts on this subject?
I am no disease specialist. I do not have a degree in epidemiology. I am no way an economist, front line healthcare worker, governmental representative, or even a counselor.
What I am is a person who has been where you are; having to deal with too much stuff while trying to navigate my life and attempting to heal from a divorce.
It would be a monumental feat for me to share practical and redundant information on COVID-19. That is why your local, state, and national governmental bodies were created. From the CDC to your local doctors and healthcare professionals, they can give you the best information on anything and everything you need to know on the virus.
What they cannot do is speak to you about what really matters; the health of your soul.
With all that is going on, the health of your soul is the most important thing, in my opinion.
In my own hometown, calls to the police for domestic violence are up 20% over last year for last month (March 2020). While many families are coming closer together during this difficult time, many others are fighting and hurting each other at an alarming rate.
Our souls (mind, will, and emotions) are hurting, confused, and just plain tired. They are being torn down by so many different factors, not the least being our financial situations, the media, elderly parents that won’t stay at home, or our own family getting on our nerves.
For the most part, what is attacking our souls is not something physical. It is our own thoughts and fears about what is currently going on and what is to come. It is being attacked by our thoughts towards one another and not knowing where the next paycheck is coming from.
These are all valid and need to be acknowledged, but they need to be retaliated against. Just not in a physical way.
You never attack the wind with a sword. The wind comes and goes as it pleases. It changes direction and intensity at will. We can try to predict how strong it will be and from what direction, but even that is futile at times.
So how do you handle the “wind” coming against you?
You put up a wind turbine and allow the wind to create energy for you!!
Just like fire, wind can do good and do bad. It can destroy a building itself by crushing it with a large tree. It can cause waves that crash upon a dike that may break and flood whole communities. Wind can carry debris during a hurricane or tornado that could cause death and destruction beyond our wildest imaginations.
It can also provide electricity when driving the blades of a huge wind turbine. It can propel a sailboat through a beautiful channel of islands in the Caribbean. It can bring refreshing on a hot day as you lay by a pool, reading a book.
The wind of circumstance for both the pandemic and divorce have 2 things in common; it can bring forth death & destruction or it can bring peace and energy to move forward.
So how can you protect your soul during this time of corona virus and divorce?
(1) Find a hiding place
We have all heard of the social distancing and stay at home orders. It works for the spread of the virus.
When you are needing a hiding place for your soul during divorce, find it in the person of Jesus and His word (the bible).
Psalm 32:7 You are a hiding place for me; you preserve me from trouble; you surround me with shouts of deliverance. Selah (Pause. Take a moment and let the passage above speak to you)
A hiding place allows you protection as well as giving you a place to gain strength for what is to come next. It is in our hiding place where we can either grow or fall apart. It is all a decision on how you address the time and how you use that time while you are there.
(2) Be cautious
Wear a mask. Stay 6 feet away from other people. Do not be in a group of more 10 people.
When divorce becomes a part of our lives, we need to be careful who we hand around. Family can be as much of a hindrance as a help, if they are not speaking life to you. Doing things and going places with those who just want to make you “feel good’ only cause more damage and destruction for your soul.
Spend time with Godly people, those willing to speak life and not death to you and your situation. Pastors, counselors (Christian or Christian-friendly), friends, and family that encourage you to seek God are the ones that will feed our soul instead of tearing it down.
God will protect you and provide the wisdom you need during this time in ways you may never ever know. Only days, month and years down the road may you see how following God’s ways have kept you from harm and helped your soul heal.
3) Plan to come out
With wisdom from the healthcare and business professionals, we will emerge from the isolation from this pandemic. It needs to be a plan with much consideration for the health of all people and our country as a whole.
There will come that day when your soul will be able to move forward with God’s help and wisdom. It will be a time of uncertainty and apprehension, but He will be with you every step of the way, if you let Him.
I know that this verse is one of the most quoted verses in the Bible, but I felt it fit better than all of the others. God does have a plan for you. Your challenge is to bring your soul in alignment with that plan. From there, God will guide you out in wisdom and with peace.
4) Walk in faith
The day is coming soon (if it hasn’t already) when we will be asked to leave our isolation and return to work, return to school, and return to living lives outside of our homes. It may look different for quite a while, yet we need to move on with what needs to be done to move forward.
Our soul will grow stronger as we exercise it; moving out from our hiding place into the next chapter in our life. God will give you the strength and encouragement to move on. You may not think you are ready (usually nobody thinks that), but God is calling you out into His marvelous light.
Another popular verse, yet it so relevant to our situation. When we step out after divorce, we can’t see what will happen. We have no idea how things may turn out, but I know how does.
He is the One who is, who was, and who is to come. He knows the beginning from the end, not just for all of humanity, but for you!!
He knows you intimately and can see what you cannot see. Walk with Him in faith as He shows you all that He is doing for you now.
Step out, holding His hand as you are encouraged with the support of Godly friends and family. He will be there for you, no matter what.
My prayer for you is that you find Jesus through all of this in a new and healthy way. May His healing power heal our bodies and our souls during this difficult time.
If you are interested in any free resources (book for sale, if desired) to help you as you proceed through the healing process of divorce, here are a couple of Reading Plans I wrote for the YouVersion Bible App.
The links to those plans and my book are below: