Amidst the bad news that keeps pouring in from around the world, there have been some positive things as well. Pollution is down across the board from cleaner air to cleaner water – the Venice canals are flourishing for example. Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions have fallen to the lowest levels in over a decade. Animal shelters are experiencing a large boost in adoptions, with some reporting totally empty kennels. People are having more time to spend with their immediate families and connect with distant loved ones.
In the midst of the current chaos the world is discovering, or rediscovering, a different rhythm to life. Obviously having people stay home indefinitely is unsustainable, but perhaps once we are on the other side of this pandemic humanity will have a new orientation to life. Maybe we will prioritize our relationships, our environment, and our well-being more appropriately.
As followers of Christ, we have been given a weekly opportunity to reset our priorities – the Sabbath. This gift has existed from Creation, because God knew that we would be blessed by a time of recalibration. This is why, in Mark 2:27, Jesus said, “The Sabbath was made to meet the needs of people, and not people to meet the requirements of the Sabbath.” So while many people in the world are discovering the blessing of this forced Sabbath rest, may we continue to find delight in the gift of our weekly Sabbaths as well.