Are You Okay?
Jul 14, 2020 1014
When I was a teenager, one day I took my father’s bicycle without his permission and went for a ride with friends. My plan had been to safely sneak it back before he woke up from his afternoon nap. Unfortunately, a terrible accident happened and as a result the front wheel was damaged and could barely move. I had to carry the bicycle back on my shoulders. Reaching home, I found my dad waiting at the gate. The first words that left his mouth were “Are you okay?”
My dad, rather than being furious, was worried about my safety. “Are you okay?” are simple words and yet so profound. It shifts attention from the merely material to life. Just as my father’s old bicycle crashed, our careers and our plans seem to have too. Amidst all this confusion, God’s ultimate concern is our lives. Even when it may seem otherwise, our value is priceless in the eyes of the Creator. This is why God went to great lengths to save us when Jesus died on the cross.
Our humanity may at times doubt God’s presence. A Christian friend was lamenting on social media about how the pandemic ruined not only his business but also his family. He wondered how he would ever pick up his life after this. Seeing he was struggling with theological questions, I reached out to him and my fears were confirmed. He had lost faith in God. My counsel was simple: You still have life. You are okay.
If we are alive, surely there is somewhere to pick up again from. To be okay would mean that our physical, spiritual, mental, psychological and social health is in tact. But is it possible to be okay after tragedy? What about those who have perished?
Peace is not freedom from trouble but rather the spirit of calmness in moments of turbulence.
The Bible maintains that it is possible to be okay even in the face of death. In John 11:25-26, “Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?”
Right from the beginning, the Bible maintains that things are okay as long as God is involved. Even after the fall, God came looking for Adam and Eve, not primarily to punish them but rather to rescue them from the curse, even from themselves. Without downplaying the implications of sin, God still assures them that things would be okay as long as they trusted him.
As mortal humans, we tend to worry about the future. But this is the time to put to practice the Lord’s example and teachings of trust. Jesus, even in the face of death, still maintained the spirit of “okay” when he submitted his spirit to his father. Peace is not freedom from trouble but rather the spirit of calmness in moments of turbulence.
I am reminded of the story of Jesus calming the storm in Luke 8:22-25. Just like that storm, Covid-19 came suddenly and found us unprepared. At this moment, we ought to have more faith in God’s mercy than in the storm of Covid-19. Perhaps our hearts would be calmer if we stopped worrying too much and began putting our trust in God. Because as long as God is involved, things are okay. You are okay.
– Pr Bonifresh Muhollo