Behind Enemy Lines

Everyone is running scared, paranoid, afraid. It’s mayhem. A whole new way and world marked by chaos and codes: green, yellow, red.

I once wrote words from the comfort of my bed with an idea of what fear the world faced.

Today I write from a hospital bed and corridors of sterile, mask wearing, hand sanitizing, invasive nasal swab testing, frightening atmospheres. And the fear is different this side of the curtain.

The worldwide epidemic has become more real to me in the hours spent in the emergency room than on my couch in front of countless episodes and reruns of ENCA.

I’ve become a status, positive or negative. I’ve never felt more dirty than when labeled as a ‘yellow’ patient parked off in a yellow zone.

Heart palpitations, headaches and hernias are no longer considered critical. We have a new mission. Jericho like walls need to fall.

Common conversation starters with neighbors, friends and family begin with statements of frustration, boredom and desperation for outside time. Talk on the street fixates on the governments’ wrong doing in their lockdown efforts. I urge you to be kind with your words please. You have no idea how real it is down in the trenches. Exposure to this gut honest truth of reality is something most people have been protected from. The trenches are filled with troops who are tail spinning and tired.

I’ve spent a decent amount of time in hospitals between sick kids and two c-sections and nothing looks the same anymore. Yellow bags filled with blue hospital gowns subjected to covid chaos. Brown boxes with red bags carry discarded surgical gowns, scrubs and sterile socks. Head gear, gloves and copious amounts of d-germ are the new norm. Make shift paper signage marking areas of green or red, safe or toxic. Patients covered in a film like sheet, nurses in hazmat gear. Aliens have invaded our world in the form of microscopic parasites and our world is fighting back, the only way we know how.

I walked inside one day, locked my door and went to sleep. I woke up to a new reality. I unlocked my door to a new life. I no longer recognize this world. It’s become a stranger.

My children long for time with their grandparents. They miss their friends. They miss ice cream cones and beach walks, spontaneous shopping sprees and Spur. They too woke up one day and school was no longer a thing. Mommy was teacher now too.

War is described as intense armed conflict between governments. I wonder if we need to slightly adjust our theories. We are behind enemy lines and our prayers need to reflect accordingly. Instead of soldiers, we have doctors. Instead of army trucks, we use ambulances. Instead of grenades we use gloves. Instead of fighter jets, we need Jesus. This is His jurisdiction.

The ward is quiet. The shuffling of paperwork is loud. The silence I longed for a few hours ago when screaming kids was all I could hear, does not live up to its desired effect. Cheesy tuna pasta and messy floors, is a much preferred ambiance.

Hospital lights are bright and the beds are uncomfortable at best, lonely in the worst possible way.

I am cross with covid and how it’s destroyed our country and our humanity. It has not only caused disaster for the economy and health systems but the relational communities that keep this world turning are suffering the most. Then I realize, it isn’t the real enemy. No, we have an enemy far worse. His aim is to steal, kill and destroy. Relationships are his target. The enemy will try and take what is not his, but Jesus declares His abundant life over those who believe.

How do we live in a world so broken and battered?

The vaccine for our infection has already been invented. Over two thousand years ago a man walked this earth, He proclaimed the gospel truth. He was the truth. And then He died, crucified on a cross. In victory, He rose again, triumphant. This tale never too old to tell. Victory is the vaccination that will heal our land and our hearts.

This pleasant scripture dances it’s way across my phone screen. Prettier words, I’ve never read before:

Matthew 19:26 – “Stunned and bewildered, his disciples asked, “Then who in the world can possibly be saved?” Looking straight into their eyes, Jesus replied, “Humanly speaking, no one, because no one can save himself. But what seems impossible to you is never impossible to God!”

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