Joy in the Time of COVID-19

I did not intend to use the COVID-19 label in my post title, because you have heard enough about the virus without my adding it to headlines. Yet this was the catchiest title I could come up with today. 

One item Bob and I have on our daily calendar is our time for morning devotional and prayers. In recent days, we’ve been following Henri Nouwen. The daily meditation is waiting in our inbox before we get up and out of bed. It’s been a good day starter for us.

Yesterday’s meditation seemed chosen specifically for this time of crisis for all of us. As we read it, I thought of all the things that are happening around us. What could we possibly find joy in right now? My recovery, the birth of our new great-granddaughter Aurora, a friend who suffered a traumatic skiing accident a week ago and is recovering, and the joy of being together in this time of stress and tension. It made us more aware of what joy really is. I thought perhaps it might help someone else if I shared it here:

Be Surprised by Joy

Learn the discipline of being surprised not by suffering but by joy. As we grow old . . . there is suffering ahead of us, immense suffering, a suffering that will continue to tempt us to think that we have chosen the wrong road. . . . But don’t be surprised by pain. Be surprised by joy, be surprised by the little flower that shows its beauty in the midst of a barren desert, and be surprised by the immense healing power that keeps bursting forth like springs of fresh water from the depth of our pain.


For more information on Henri Nouwen, his writings and work, click here.

Featured image attribution: nicko mcluff from Pixabay

6 thoughts on “Joy in the Time of COVID-19

  1. I love Henri Nouwen’s books. Thank you for including a quote of his. “Be surprised by joy…” Yes!!

    1. My introduction to Henri Nouwen came from my brother-in-law. I find Nouwen’s books to be a favorite read. Hope all is well with you and yours. “Be surprised by joy…,” dear friend!

  2. We are in strange territory now, one none of us has ever been to before now.

    Thanks for posting a lovely thought, which reminds me of C. S. Lewis’ spiritual memoir, Surprised by Joy.

    I know I’ll always find uplift here. Thank you, Sherrey!

    1. Indeed, Marian, we are in territory none of us have ever experienced before.

      You’ve reminded me I need to read C.S. Lewis’ Surprised by Joy. I’ve read several of his books, but not that one.

      Glad you come here and “find uplift.” Thanks for being a regular!

  3. So perfect for this time. I love the line about the little flower showing its beauty in the desert. Take care of yourself, Sherrie!

    1. My favorite line was the same as you’ve shared above. There is something about a flower in the desert that confirms God’s love for us no matter the circumstances surrounding us. Joan, you and John and your kitties hang in there and take care of each other.

Comments are closed.