Fear is a natural response to uncertainty. If you don’t know what lies ahead, you are uncertain, because it is not normal. We fear the abnormal, because we are used to things being done, a routine in our lives that disruptions of cause uncertainty, and idea that we don’t know what is coming, and that causes fear. We like normal. We like the usual. There may be times where we want something unexpected or surprising, but only when we are prepared for them.
We are funny that way. We don’t like to be bored, it would rather have boring and ordinary if it doesn’t require change. That’s why this month has been so incredibly stressful, because every day the rules change. Every day there is some new guideline or some new priority or some new rule that we MUST follow or else. Death has often been touted as the ultimate penalty for disobedience, as in death by COVID, but honestly, our fear of death is beginning to wane. We long for the normal, getting back to the usual. For some, not even fear of death is enough. So now it is fear of jail, fear of fines, fear of arrest. Yep. We are being told now that if we don’t follow the ever-changing rules, it’s not death we have to fear, but the police. Really? That’s the message we need to be sending?
What will be offered when fear of arrest doesn’t stop people? Will officers be told to shoot on sight? Will our property be confiscated? Why not an audit? Or forced root canals? Our desire to get back to normal will be overpowering. We call it “cabin fever” but it is a real thing. It is a stronger need for social and psychological interaction, and if not met corrodes our psyche and causes to go to unusual lengths to satisfy it. Social isolation cannot be a long-term solution because it goes against our very human and God-created nature. We will not long endure it.
Fear only lasts until it become normal. We are coming to the end of our initial fears. We have a new normal. Many are no longer afraid of COVID, just as we aren’t afraid of the flu, heart attacks, car accidents, and so many other possible ways we could die. They surface from time to time, it they only exist in the background of our minds. We don’t dwell on them because they are part of the landscape.
One thing we can be sure of is that more changes are coming. Though our world keeps changing, God is the same yesterday, today, and forever. His standards and rules do not change. I feel much more confidence in these that anything that comes from my governor.
Lord remind us today that each day is Yours and I have the privilege to live in it. Thank You Lord.