Teaching is not for the faint of heart. The work professional educators do is immensely gratifying, of course. There is clearly deep joy for teachers called to this work, or they wouldn’t continue to do it. But there is a lot of challenge in this emotional labor.
For most of us, the novel coronavirus has meant lots of time at home over the past several months. It may mean an increase in anxiety. Work-from-home and school-from-home have resulted in more screen time than normal, as meetings and classes are conducted over Zoom or a similar platform. If you have read articles online about how to cope with these changes, most of them mention the importance of spending time outside.
So many of us are desperate for a return to normal, to the familiar, that I worry about one group that we all agree things will not be normal for: those who are at elevated risk, especially those 65 or older.
In the coming years, when we look back on our cultural response to the novel coronavirus, shifting attitudes towards mask-wearing will prove an interesting case study. It has been fascinating to watch how the meaning of mask-wearing has changed in so short a time.
The key to keeping our sanity and care for one another during this time comes (by way of pun) in choosing to do two seemingly contradictory things: “zooming in” and “zooming out.” We need to zoom in on finding what moments we can to pursue the Lord, to rest in him. We need to zoom out to see the bigger picture, to stay connected to Jesus’ body.
The future in every arena of life is murkier than ever. For the church, though, the coronavirus is providing clarity.