Today’s verse for reflection from the book of Philippians is an amazing reminder how everything else pales compare to having Jesus in our lives. It has been said that we can gain the whole world, but without the peace that comes only from resting in God’s love, then we gain nothing. And yet still, if we have nothing, but just the love of God and the peace that comes when we are in His presence, then we would have had all that we ever needed.
Truly the pandemic has brought so much changes in all of our lives. For some sadly, it even brought sickness, suffering and even death to the family. For others still, it brought death in other forms - to their jobs, businesses and their livelihood. But I think for the most of us, what the pandemic has done for us is that it has cut off all our usual routines, entertainments and distractions. Initially, it all devastated us. We all miss our usual morning run and commute, the hustle at the office, the dinner with friends after work, and maybe our occasional trips to the beach or other countries.
It has emptied us of our worldly attachments. We were all cut off from what we thought we needed and we were stripped down to what only is essential. It actually gave us a new meaning to what is essential. We were locked up in our homes, and we suddenly see how we didn’t really need all the things we thought we needed back then. We did not even had to go out of our own homes. And yet, life went on.
In the face of loss, we knew what was truly important – our family, closest friends, and our faith in God. In the absence of all our activities, we found ourselves turning to God more and more and realizing we can lose the world, and still be ok if we have Christ in our hearts. In the face of instability of everything we thought we had, we had the chance to only hold on to what is true, what never changes, and what will always be with us – the love of Christ. In Philippians chapter 3 verse 7, it is written “But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ.” This resonated to me so well, because now, more than a year into the pandemic, I know more than ever that everything I had before all this, everything seemingly good thing I had, was actually distracting me and taking my attention away from Christ – the only one that truly, truly matters. The past year or so have shown us that we can lose everything else, and yet if we find peace in the love of Christ, then we would have gained everything we needed. Now we know, truly, that if Christ is all I have, then I have all I need.
In closing, let this reflection be a reminder to us to rest in Christ in the midst of uncertainty during this pandemic. Let us rest in His unfailing love. It is also a good reminder for us that when the time comes when we start to open our economies again, and we start to fill our calendars with our activities again, that we may always find the time for Christ and remember what peace we had when all we had was Him.