Blogger: Anna Ott
Think about COVID-19. Did anything positive come to mind? Was your head instantly flooded with memories of being confused, stressed, and anxious? Pointing out the negative influence this pandemic has had on my life is not something I would consider a challenge. But when I really start to think about who I was at the beginning of quarantine compared to who I am now, I realize that God has used this season of my life to completely transform not only my life situations, but who I am as a Christian.
Before the introduction of the Coronavirus, my senior year was turning out to be challenging to say the least. The changes that were coming up in my life were causing my anxiety to be at an all time high. Although I had chosen to go to Regent University in the fall, I had so many fears about being on my own in a new environment. Also, the all-star cheerleading gym that I attended as well as coached, was shutting down due to the terrible season we were having.
When COVID-19 caused the nation to go into quarantine, I would have never imagined the events that followed. Having so much time with nothing to do, I really started spending time with God and asking Him to reveal things in me that I didn’t even realize were there. God opened my eyes and showed me that I was letting fear overrule all of the things that I not only I wanted to do in this next phase of my life, but what God was calling me to do. At the same time God was revealing this to me, I stumbled across an article of a highly achieved actor who said that if he was scared to play a certain role in a movie – then that is the role he knew he had to play. This inspired me to do things that I hadn’t even realized I wanted to do with fear in the way. I decided to live on campus at Regent University as well as try out for a renowned cheerleading team in Richmond.
Being in quarantine really strengthened my relationship with God. Although the life God is calling me to live is my best option, it doesn’t make the fear go away. I really have to trust in God and remember that nothing can stop His hand on my life. My new trust in God has helped my anxiety massively. Talking to new people in high school before the virus made me uneasy, but by the time graduation rolled around, I wasn’t nervous at all to go and graduate. Graduation for me was more than just an academic achievement. It was a way for me to celebrate moving on from the person I was to the person that I am becoming outside of Grassfield High School. It was a way for me to celebrate how much God had completely changed me from the inside out.
Going through this time, there was one Bible verse that helped me get through some tough decisions in my life. It came from the book of 1 Peter.
“Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”
1 Peter 5:6-7 NIV
This Bible verse really helped me with my fear and anxiety. It reminded me of two different things. First, it reminded me that much of my anxiety comes from my own pride and that I need to humble myself and remember that it is not all about me. Second, it reminded me that Jesus cares for me so much and that giving my anxiety to Him can fill me with such peace in return.
When you think of the Coronavirus what do you think of? Can you think of anything positive God did in your life over this season of being quarantined? I challenge you to try and look for the blessings that God has given you. It’s easy to see the negative in a worldwide pandemic, but I challenge you to choose to see the positive and see what God can do!