The hardest thing about quarantine for me so far has been the grieving. It feels like everyone is losing something: people can’t meet with their friends, others are being laid off, events are canceled, loved ones pass away. Everyone in my circle is grieving something. And that’s hard. 

It’s difficult because things seemed to be running so smoothly. Before COVID-19 changed most of my plans, I didn’t have much concern for the future. I knew what was going to happen and when. But God had other things in mind. I as a follower of Christ need to submit to God’s plans over my own. But I still grieved. Does that highlight something wrong in my life? 

As I discussed a lot of the changes in my life with a friend, she shared something important to my journey through grief: “Christ-centered lament ends with hope.” If this momentary low point still points towards hope, then I’m ok. When I took a step out of my sadness, I could see God working in all of the grief. Prayer has become more of a focus for me in this time. I have been studying the Bible more than just my daily devotions. Being away from my friends and work has made me long for the day that I can return to Hungary. Being away from Budapest has given be a weird sense of joy that I get to spend extra time with my family. Quarantine has given me the space to take stock of my life, habits, and choices. It is a gift that I haven’t taken lightly. My grief has also allowed me to be thankful. I’m so thankful that I serve the God who understands these emotions. Grief and sadness are not foreign concepts to Him. Jesus experienced all human emotions while on earth.  

I find comfort in the fact that He understands my pain as well as my joy. I’m also thankful that I serve a God who comforts me. I have found great comfort in reading Psalm 91:4, which paints the picture of God the Father as a bird who covers and protects its young with its wings. Even when I am unsure about my present situation, God is with me in the moment, weathering the storm with me. 

Ultimately, I am comforted by the Truth that can be summed up in Lamentations 3:22-23 “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” I can rest knowing that God’s compassion will not end. Every day, I find more and more hope as I rely on the God who knows my grief and can lead me through it. 

– By Sadie Sprankle, OMS Hungary Team Member