The Real Pandemic
In the past few months, many people have become stressed with the onslaught of COVID-19. Radio hosts complain about 2020, calling it a “total wash” and the worst year many have seen. I would venture to say that COVID-19 is not the real pandemic of our generation and our world; Busyness is our world’s pandemic. . . .Or perhaps just the USA’s? I actually think that this pandemic has served us well in highlighting a real problem in our society: chaos in our daily schedules and the need to step away and be still.
How often have you tried to encounter someone in conversation and they or you speaks the phrase: “I’m SO busy!” after which, you proceed to detail why and how you are so busy. We are all guilty of doing it. Then, before you know it, your time to be with this person has then ended and you walk away knowing nothing more about the other’s heart and condition. So many people suffer from deep loneliness and come to us looking for love and we turn them away, verbally, by directing the conversation onto ourselves and proclaiming our exhaustive “busyness”.
When did being “busy” become so popular? I have thought about it through and through and perhaps busyness has always existed and I only see it now because I exist at this time in history. Pope Francis recently, in his pontificate at least, released a document concerning the family and urged parents to “waste time with their children”. I would go even broader and urge people to “waste time” with one another. We can rephrase “waste” into “spend” or even “invest” seeing as the first often conjures a negative connotation. But, I think he’s right. We need to be okay with being still and being quiet. We NEED each other and cannot be alone. I believe that busyness often times itself turns into a distraction away from our priorities.
We all create schedules that serve our greatest priorities. I often ask myself if a proposed activity really belongs in my schedule and serves my top priorities. St. Teresa of Avila shared that the closer one becomes to God, the simpler one becomes. If this is true, why do we introduce a busyness into our lives that often robs us of our peace and focus on Christ? There will always be time when there is much to do since the saints were people of the decision-making type, but how much of our schedules are conducive to becoming a saint and becoming simpler?
This article was written by an awesome young adult pen named Mary Lou J. Stephens. You may or may not see them around but if you see them, be sure to say "hi". They may or may not like trees, puppies, newspaper, or even hand sanitizer.