Hope, Two Years On

Another year has passed since we were in the first lockdown of the Covid-19 pandemic. Though to many the pandemic is a thing of the past, and many really don’t think masks or social distancing is a thing even in enclosed spaces like the tube, there are still people who aren’t yet ready to relax just yet.

I for one am grateful for a bit of normalcy, especially where I can take my toddler who basically knew nothing but our 4 walls for the majority of her life, out and about to meet new people and experience new things. I was also going a bit stir crazy myself of doing the same thing and going to the same places for such a lot time – it really didn’t sit well with my Sagittarian spirit.

This time last year, we marked the one year anniversary by planting The Tree Of Hope in the community garden near Swan Lake. We were still in a level of lockdown which really wasn’t where we thought we’d be a year on with vaccinations. Two years on with many of us having a second jab and a booster, it is a very different story. We have scrapped all restrictions even on travel into the UK. Like I said, this has been welcomed by many, and for those who aren’t 100% comfortable, mask wearing and social distancing is still an option. But it doesn’t negate those who have lost friends, family and neighbours due to the pandemic. Even those still suffering with long Covid aren’t able to fully relax. There were also so many people who lost their livelihood. So though a lot of us are welcoming being back to normal, there are still so many dealing with the consequences Covid-19 brought to their feet.

Despite the tragedy there are things I really pray that we won’t start to take for granted now that a new normal has been established. Respect and care towards those who have kept this county running by being on the front line – the healthcare workers, delivery men and women and those who work in our supermarkets.

The sense of community and caring for those around us. If you helped an older person during lockdowns, please do continue to check in on them – kindness and neighbourly acts don’t rely on a global pandemic – they can and should be a part of our everyday lives.

Appreciating the work life balance: I know so many dads who go to really know their children because they were no longer just seeing them for an hour a day and then on weekends, but properly spending quality time with them. I know women who ran the household and everything was on their shoulder, who were able to share so much more with their partner because everyone was home. The pandemic broke a few relationships, but for those who were able to ride the wave together, it really made and strengthened that bond. We realised work wasn’t the be all and end all, what really mattered was who you spent you spent your time with, those you love and who love you too. With hybrid working coming into play, I really hope home life can continue to take precedence.

The focus on looking after our mental health is also a key one. Getting out and going for walks, not just listening to the 24 hour news with its ever increasing doom and gloom, easing off the social media train of comparison and allowing ourselves to feel all the feelings of the last two years. Carving out time for yourself is still important even as normal life resumes.

I pray all of these things are still held as important by us all. But the main thing I pray for is the continued sense of hope and faith. The world is still an uncertain place, some would argue even more so now, but despite all the negatives happening around us, I pray hope and faith prevails. We thank God for getting us to where we have gotten two years on despite the tragedy, despite the loss, despite the hardship, we are slowly slowly picking up the pieces and moving forward in a more positive direction. And with every step, we know He is walking with us, helping to carry the pieces, taking on that heavy load for us.

Prayer For Hope

Heavenly Father, I am your humble servant, I come before you today in need of hope. There are times when I fell helpless, There are times when I feel weak. I pray for hope. I need hope for a better future. I need hope for a better life. I need hope for love and kindness. Some say that the sky is at it’s darkest just before the light. I pray that this is true, for all seems dark. I need your light, Lord, in every way. I pray to be filled with your light from head to toe. To bask in your glory. To know that all is right in the world, as you have planned, and as you want it to be. Help me to walk in your light, and live my life in faith and glory. In your name, I pray, Amen.

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