5 Tips for Living from Love, Not Fear
Nathan Betts shares five tips for living in love and not fear during the COVID-19 pandemic.
These tips are adapted from Nathan Betts's article, The Coronavirus: Choosing Love in a Time of Fear.
It is difficult to live out of love when our minds are anxious. A still mind is a better starting point. Take time daily to be quiet. In this moment, there is so much noise, especially online. If we find our minds and hearts busy, setting aside time daily to simply be quiet can enable our minds to have the quietness we need.
Pray often. We live in an age of self-sufficiency. And yet, the coronavirus has exposed how flawed this mindset is. Setting aside different times of the day for prayer to God, calling out to Him for help, reminds us that we cannot do things on our own. We need his help. If we call out to Him, He will answer.
3. Listening to God
Take time daily to read or listen to the Bible. The Bible shines a spotlight on how God has acted throughout history—in times of hardship, plagues, war, famine, and peace. The Bible helps us know what God is like and how He has acted throughout history. Becoming aware of God’s acting throughout history creates a greater sensitivity to how he might be working today in our lives and in the world.
Practice the discipline of understanding. I have found that in order for me to love my neighbor, friend, or family member well, I need to understand them. Understanding is vital to loving. But this takes patience and care. It requires us to ask more questions than to utter statements when we are in conversations.
5. Thoughtful Care*
Increasing amounts of people are being quarantined during this time. Having the opportunity to express care and kindness can become more challenging. One practical way in which we could express care for our quarantined friends could be to use our phones to actually call our friend. Or we could set up a video call. Hearing a friend’s voice can be hugely meaningful, especially during times of self-isolation. We could send a note of encouragement to a friend by text or video chat. While still maintaining social distancing, making a point to check in on elderly or vulnerable neighbors could be a way of letting them know that they are loved. In this time, we need to become creative in expressing embodied ways of expressing care to others while at the same time not necessarily being physically present with them.
*This was updated on March 16, 2020 to reflect the most recent safety regulations from the CDC.