Tuesday, April 14, 2020
I Want a New Normal
"I just want things to go back to normal."
I hear this all the time. I agree with this, partially.
In the Old Normal people could see their sick loved ones in the hospital. We could all gather together on Sunday mornings. We could be with our extended families on Easter. Most people had jobs. Small businesses were open. We didn't have to wear masks in public. We could get close than six feet. We could eat out. We didn't have global fear. And there was enough toilet paper for all.
I would like all of that to return, and more.
But the Old Normal had systemic problems. There was a loneliness epidemic. People were too busy to be still, and know God. People were too busy to pray. Secular culture had taken over. The Church had become marginalized, and lost its influence. Parents kept their kids in sports on Sunday mornings. Utilitarian ethics was our default moral framework. The goal of life was happiness. "Success" was measured metrically (especially in the Church). Pornography abounded. Baby-killing was legal. There were massive, cross-cultural identity crises. People worked themselves to the bone, and for what? People resorted to arguing by texting, instead of face-to-face. And God was mostly unattended to, as we created and bowed before our selfies, making ourselves into our own images.
I don't want to go back to that. I don't want the Old Normal to be resuscitated. I want a New Normal to be resurrected.
As bad and sad as the pandemic is, some have told me that self-isolation has brought their families closer together. Some are talking together, praying together, walking together, worshiping together, eating meals together, doing projects together, zooming together.
All this makes me wonder, is the revival we've been praying for at hand? Is the illusion that we control all things being exposed?
In this toxic mess there is an opportunity. We have seen what humans without God can do. Now is the time to encounter the God who says, "Behold, I make all things new."
This is your great opportunity. You can be "born again." You can become a "new creation." The resurrection principle is this: dead things come to be new, transformed life. Like dry bones taking on new flesh.
It is time for something completely different. Time for something that transcends fragile, finite human talents and abilities. Time for something money has never been able to buy. Time for something that gets us out of our self-worship.
I want a New Normal.
Time to shed Narcissus and put on Jesus.
Time to go after this.