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  • Writer's pictureBecky Proctor

Make a new routine

Choosing to stay at home is a gift.

Being told to stay home is restrictive, uncomfortable, somewhat claustrophobic.

If you live alone, you may be feeling isolated. If you live with others, you are called upon to exercise tolerance, understanding and patience.

As sisters in Christ, I invite you to join me in re-framing this experience. Allow the peacefulness referred to in Philippians 4:7 envelope you that we all might see and use this unexpected period of time as a gift.

Time, after all, is the one thing that money cannot buy.

Structuring my days has helped me feel as if every day is productive and meaningful. Here are some of the new things I have been doing and, if I do them long enough, they may just become my new permanent routine:

I start my day with inspirational reading and a hot beverage. The newspaper subscription has been canceled, so I am not tempted to start my day with gloom and doom. Instead, I read on-line devotionals to establish my spiritual anchor for the day.

Next, I lace up my sneakers and slip out the door for a brisk walk of at least 25 minutes. It gets my blood flowing and my energy going. I enjoy walking alone because I can really stretch out my legs and let my mind wander as I inhale the fresh air and watch and listen to the birds.

Back home and after a cool down, I head to the shower. Each day, I dress with care, do my hair, apply makeup and put on my watch and a pair of earrings. I won’t be leaving the house, but I find it psychologically uplifting these days to take extra care with my grooming.

My mornings are free to write, work on lesson plans or do some chores around the house.

After lunch, we have what we refer to as “free reading.” If you are like me, you always have books waiting to be read, or favorites you always want to read again. This is the time of day when this happens.

After dinner is time to catch up on emails, texting and calling relatives and friends. Facetime and Skype are especially valuable these days.

Our TV time is limited. No more than half an hour of news; about two hours of entertainment.

I have reestablished a habit that the last words that leave my lips before I turn of my bedside light are, “Thank you for this day, Lord.” His abiding presence is an anchor for my soul.

I wonder what the future will bring. How long will this last? What will life be like after the virus has run its course? I know in my heart that this, too, shall pass, and I pray for patience and understanding for all humankind.

Today, as we yearn for a time when we will be together again, sharing laughter, smile and a warm hug, I pray we all embrace this unexpected gift of time and use it for our own personal and spiritual growth. May we learn to approach and embrace life with more wisdom, understanding and compassion, and to God be the glory.

Lord, we trust You with our todays, our tomorrows and our forever. For Your steadfast love, we humbly thank You. Amen.

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