The underlying theme of these Coronavirus days seems to be stress. Of course, there are many variations on this theme depending on the factors of our lives. Life isn’t what it once was or what it should be. We feel stressed and basically life’s a mess.
Can’t we just go backwards, back to how things used to be?
Let’s try it with something simple, like the word “stressed.”
If we spell it backwards it becomes “desserts.” Isn’t that nice? Doesn’t that make you feel better already? Maybe yes, maybe not exactly. Living under stress can actually make us daydream about desserts. It becomes harder to focus on the good, the better, and the best about life.
This even happens when we pick up the Gospel.
How many times have we waltzed through the account of the Beatitudes without a second thought. Some see them as kind of charming, a bit poetic, sort of like a spiritual dessert. Nice for posters or bookmarkers, but not necessarily life-changing words.
However, the Beatitudes are the heart of the Gospel. They are what it is all about. They are a description of what life should look like.
As I say in my book, Blessed Are the Stressed, The beatitudes are attitudes refined over a lifetime, culminating in an eternal enjoyment of perfect happiness.
These are the attitudes that in the here and now bless our lives, our day-in-and day-out lives, our hunkered down in place days and our back to normal days.
Take some time today and read through Matthew 5: 1-12 and savor these wonderful promises of Christ. We can’t avoid being stressed, but the Beatitudes say to us: blessed are the stressed.
Sr Mary Lea Hill, FSP
Author of Blessed Are the Stressed