Coronavirus as Dress Rehearsal

“I’m confident America will figure this out and fix it.”

So said my mother’s yoga partner two months ago when COVID-19 was beginning to take over all our lives. Now I wonder if this woman has changed her tune.

A lot has happened since she uttered those confident words. The virus has infected many, killing tens of thousands of Americans. The economy has gone into gridlock, schools are closed, and many states still enforce “stay at home” policies to mitigate the spread. No one, including our health and political officials, has a clear plan—or even knows if autumn will bring another wave of death.

If one jumps on social media, though, there’s still plenty of levity and optimism. Many appear to believe there’s already a light at the end of the tunnel. Like the necessary evils of studying for a pre-calculus final or getting your wisdom teeth removed, this COVID-19 episode is just another painful valley to be endured, with an eventual exit.

Which is it, then: painful experience or permanent reality?

Is This a Footrace?

Thousands of years ago, the prophet Jeremiah was a front-row spectator to the destruction of Judah and his people’s captivity to Babylon. Prior to this brutal exile, he was largely ignored and even abused by his hearers. Bringing his grievances to God, he received an interesting reply: “If you have raced with men on foot, and they have wearied you,… click to read Ben’s article on



Photo by Jeremy Lapak on Unsplash.

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