Beyond the Norm

There’s one sentiment that is widely expressed today despite our race, social status, or faith, and that is nothing is normal anymore.  The sudden and unexpected pandemic caused by COVID-19 (Corona Virus) has taken us all out of the realm that we called normal.  When we are challenged out of our convenient and familiar norms, feelings of fear and anxiety often arise.  In crisis, no one is exempt from these feelings, but how we handle crisis depends on our ability to see beyond “normal”.

The ministry of Jesus Christ was anything but normal.  He was sent into the earth to defy what was normal.  Matter of fact anywhere Jesus went, normal was disrupted: Jesus’s meeting with the woman at the well, Jesus eating with sinners, Jesus healing on the Sabbath, or Jesus overturning the money tables in the Temple.  There are many accounts in scripture that substantiates His call to provoke life beyond the norm.

The pandemic will come to an end.  However, I challenge you to get comfortable with life beyond the norm.  When stay-at-home orders are relaxed and the pandemic is over, our ability to live beyond pre-pandemic norms will separate the victim from the victor, the underdog from the overcomer, and the religious from righteous relationship with Christ.  Let us find comfort in these words:

I have told you these things so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take courage; I have overcome the world!” John 16:33 Berean Study Bible 

Jesus knew that the disciples being separated from Him would cause feelings of fear and anxiety. Much like we are feeling separated from our normal houses of worship, but for those who can worship beyond the norm, the loving presence of God remains.