Living in Hope

By Rev. Catherine Lawrence  •  June 03, 2021

Grounded in Creation

The power of creation infuses a profound sense of awe, deep within my soul. Recent summer-like temperatures in the 80’s and bright sunshine have blessed our days. The darkness of the night sky has been illuminated by a very special full moon on May 26th . This is known as a super moon because of its bright color and large size. Natives refer to it as a flower moon in celebration of the abundance of colorful spring flowers. This year, a total lunar eclipse simultaneously occurred with the full moon to create a red “Blood Moon”. Given the events of the past year, I was surprised to learn that the last “Blood Moon” occurred in January of 2020.

Radical Change

While the consistent creational pattern of the moon has remained on course over the last sixteen months, our world has been forever changed by the traumatic events created by the pandemic spread of Covid-19. Unlike astronomers consistent charting of the moon’s patterns, scientists and health care providers were overwhelmed on multiple fronts as the pandemic raged across our world. Critically ill patients needed intensive care that involved additional staff, high levels of oxygen administration, specialty medications and respiratory equipment. The immediate need for personal protective equipment of masks, face shields, gowns, gloves and even foot coverings were critical to prevent the spread of disease and keep caregivers safe.

Staying Safe

The last sixteen months has been a massive call to arms for humankind.  The primary focus shifted to how does society stay safe as this disease ravages, especially the frail and most vulnerable with complex conditions among us? I believe that a dual call to arms and a rapid outpouring of profound hope for a brighter future blossomed within the souls of very determined people worldwide.

Living in Hope through Change

Hope is an action word, defined by Merriam Webster: to cherish a desire with anticipationto want something to happen or be true. To hope has been a call action for care, safety, and addressing basic human needs. Radical changes in our daily lives intensified the importance of continued connection with others. People were mobilized to think outside their normal structures as communities went into lockdown. Businesses developed new models, and avenues for production of necessary resources and equipment. Technology also expanded rapidly, as delivery methods were enhanced. Facetime and zoom meetings created new connections for continued communication within families, through work, school, worship, and community activities. This traumatic Covid experience has challenged humankind to develop new skills. Especially in our care community, residents, families and staff rose with hope to address radical changes in their daily lives. People adapted and adjusted to new routines. Many elders increased technology skills to order on-line and connect through facetime and zoom meetings.

Looking Forward with Hope

Living in hope the past sixteen months and affirmed by the consistent sunrise and sunset of each day, we give thanks for the eternal presence of our Divine Creator. Moving through the challenges of each day, brothers and sisters around the world have lived the admonition of 1 Peter 1:12: therefore prepare your minds for action; discipline yourselves; set all your hope on the grace that Jesus Christ will bring you when he is revealed. (NRSV). Thanks to intensive collaboration of health caregivers, scientists and pharmaceutical companies, people are being vaccinated and newly diagnosed Covid cases are on the decline. Outdoor activities are celebrated and vaccinated loved ones are hugging and re-connecting through cherished family rituals. Our world is slowly recovering and moving toward healthier days. Reflecting on lives lost and painful lessons learned during this devastating pandemic, my prayer is that humankind continue to fully live into the power of hope-filled change. As we demonstrate care and kindness to those on life’s path, may the love of Jesus Christ be a light that shines brightly into our weary, yet recovering world.

About the Author

Rev. Catherine Lawrence

Rev. Cathy served as pastor and teacher at Zion UCC Fireside in Bellevue, Ohio for eight years. A registered nurse, she had combined her passion for the care and nurture of the whole person, mind, body and spirit in her role as chaplain at Parkvue Community in Sandusky, where she retired in November 2020. She is a lifelong learner, the mother of two adult children and one beloved grandchild.

View all articles by Rev. Catherine Lawrence