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Day 1 - Relationships | 10 for 10 | Daily Inspiration - October 2

In helping Middleton recover from the 2018 flood, the first thing I learned is that everything is connected. Things that had been designed never to break, broke. And some of the things that didn’t fail came awfully close – things like dams, and bridges, and our drinking water system. In the past six months, we’ve lived through changes that we couldn’t possibly have imagined last Christmas – things like virtual school, and deserted city streets, and wearing masks, and health care workers sleeping in RV’s to protect their family. And other things like noticeably cleaner air, wildlife reclaiming some habitat, and finding new ways to connect while keeping distant from other people.

I know people who graduated college at home, with only their immediate family. I know people that got married, surrounded mostly by love and prayers – because they couldn’t have family or guests. I know people that still haven’t been able to get back to their office or see their co-workers, because they need to help keep each other safe (I’m married to one of them). The pandemic, like any crisis, has caused loss. But it’s also woken our appreciation for relationships.

In this pandemic crisis, we found out in a hurry that everything, and everybody, is connected. Nobody got hand sanitizer unless the factory could figure out how to open safely, and truck drivers could stay on the road, and store employees could stay healthy, and hoarding could be controlled. In a crisis, there is no value in an “every-man-for-himself” mentality. The only thing that works is to recognize that every decision we make, and every action we take, has to be based on love and concern for each other.

We don’t need social network applications – we need relationships. We’re made to live in community, in a world made of infinitely interrelated systems. We need to know that when trouble comes, we can count on each other. As the Avengers said, “We owe this to everyone who’s not in this room – to try – whatever it takes.”

I don’t know when this COVID-19 pandemic will end. I don’t know what the “new normal” will look like. I do know that sometimes the aftermath of a crisis reveals that it turned out to be good that some things broke. We have a chance now to re-think what we really value, and to change our community by building those things up. Together.

- Shawn Stauske

10 for 10 Daily Inspiration | Day 1: Relationships

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