The irony of the coronavirus is that we are forced into isolation at the very time we most need each other. Now is the time to look beyond our immediate situation to find strength in something greater than ourselves.
Many find comfort in a higher power, a sense of universal goodness, or God. This is a good time to go to ancient practices of prayer and meditation, walking in nature, and listening to music, to move beyond the stress of the news and our current reality.
It is also a good time to connect with people of one’s own faith community for support. Many practicing people of faith turned to online resources for worship this past weekend. They found a welcome assurance that “we are in this together” and “we believe in something greater than our fears.”
Licensed psychologist Dr. Ali Mattu gave this advice for our time of shelter-in-place in a phone interview with state Sen. Steve Glazer in a telephone town hall meeting on March 22: Create a new daily routine, find two to three things to occupy your mind, limit your media intake, stay in touch with two to three close friends, get exercise, think about today and tomorrow (not the long term), express gratitude to those who are making a difference, get help from a trusted mental health professional or call the National Crisis Line, (800) 273-8255, and seek spiritual connections.
It might not occur to you to start going to church (or temple or mosque) just now. In the first place, you can’t leave your home. But this would be the perfect time to explore online a faith community that may appeal to you. Especially if you are feeling alone or anxious, go to a church website, Facebook, or YouTube, and see what you find.
People of faith everywhere are praying for you and our world; that we make it through this crisis with courage and a renewed belief in human goodness.