Before the winter holiday last year, I planned to return to my hometown this Spring Festival. We have not returned to our hometown to see our parents for five years because of work. And this year, my wife's holiday just happened to be at the time of the Festival, so we and the children were very excited about this treasured opportunity.
However, the night before New Year's Eve, my wife received a call from the hospital—all staff who had not yet left could not leave because of the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. All we could do was get a refund on our tickets and spend the Spring Festival at home. We both were medical workers and needed to be available on the front line.
We have stayed at home for almost three months, and have only gone out to purchase daily necessities. Looking back, although there was depression, disappointment, concern, and darkness, I was still full of hope. The world is in His hands, who is with us all the time.
To describe what the pandemic has meant to me, I would select the following four terms: reserve, withdraw, construction, and new life.
At our disposal, we have reserves available including economic, relational, emotional, and our faith. We live in a traditional way without major expenses except for housing loans and daily living costs. We have saved money for unexpected needs, which gives a sense of security. Not having economic worries has helped us get through this extraordinary time.
At home, we could only communicate with friends online and via video chat. But fortunately, I still had many friends, brothers and sisters, and even friends that I rarely would see that we had time to chat with. Frequent contact with them gave me great comfort, making me not feel so alone at home. Families and our connections support us emotionally and socially.
But my strength also came from Jesus. Over the past decades, I have stored the strength that Jesus gave me. Jesus said that He must be resurrected and that He has overcome the darkness of this world. He walks with each of us and is in my heart.
The contact with my family has given me emotional comfort. Our families have always provided our most solid support.
Jesus said that a house should be built on rock and not on the sand. Our wealth should be stored in heaven, not on the earth. These words gained deeper meaning during the pandemic. Our foundation was a good financial situation, strong relationships, health of our emotional life because of our family and their support, and our relationship with Jesus. Only when we build on these rocks can our lives be safe, and we can stand firmly in the wind and rain. We often value material wealth too much and spend too much to buy extra houses. But once the pandemic came and income declined, we were bound to be in trouble. And those invisible relationships and emotions were a valuable asset. The pandemic was building life for me, making me adjust and alert myself.
After this, I understood how to live in the future, how to see life and the world. I was like a bug in a cocoon, the moment when I broke out after sleeping and darkness, I would change to a new life form.
There is no experience that is wasted for those who pay attention to it. Everything created by God is there to help us to grow in our lives, and any experience of wind and rain could absorb the nutrients for life to grow.
We walked with Jesus, and had the teaching from Him: "I have spoken these things to you, that my joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be made full." (John 15:11)
- Translated By Elaina Wu