Thoughts From Isolation

So I am currently self-isolating for 14 days due to my trip out of the country.

Sunday I journeyed through the Orlando airport security, sat in a completely full airplane, and got temporarily stranded in the Toronto airport- all with this fear in the back of my mind from the panic I’ve read on social media. I didn’t Lysol my seat down like most were on the plane, but I got worried that maybe I should. All around me, everyone’s panic started to make me feel like I should also panic, but I guess that’s how the toilet paper frenzy started; panic feeding panic.

I’m learning that there is a balance. Before I was living like it was not real, ignoring all the warnings- but that could put others at risk. I also don’t want to be too extreme about it, running away from all my friends and family like they have the plague- because we’ll eventually all get hurt from the loneliness. 

I am fortunate to have a home to isolate in and a family to isolate with. But, though the news is telling us to stay inside, not everyone in our community at Parkdale is able to do that. Some people don’t have families and need to get out to be with their friends whom they consider family. Others have no physical home to go inside to or their home isn’t a safe place. Many have lost their most comfortable spaces, with the closing of the Tim Hortons, A&W, the library, etc, in which they might consider to be their living rooms.

Unfortunately I have not been able to join The Dale this week due to my isolation, but I’m so proud of my team and all they’ve been doing! It breaks my heart to think of what our community (and many others in Toronto who are street involved) are going through. These times seem to emphasize the class distinctions at an even greater degree. Instead of fearing the stranger on the street, maybe we can learn from them. They know what it’s like to not have enough of what they need. They know what it looks like to share in the midst of poverty.

I hope that our city can learn to maintain a balance of being cautious, while still checking in with our friends and neighbours. I hope that we can figure out how to take care of ourselves without taking all the products off the shelf so that others can have some too.

Today I read Psalm 145. It was so encouraging to read about how great the Lord is and how worthy of praise. Since we are in this time of fear and unknown, I want to share a list of some of the amazing truths of God that I found in this chapter. You may have heard them all before, but they were such a comforting reminder to me.

His greatness we cannot fathom. (v. 3)

He is gracious and compassionate. (v. 8)

He is rich in love. (v. 8)

The Lord is good to all. (v. 9)

His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom. (v. 13)

We can trust the Lord in all He promises. (v. 13)

He upholds all who fall. (v. 14)

He provides for our physical needs at the proper time. (v. 15)

All His ways are righteous and faithful. (v. 17)

He is near those who call. (v. 18)

He hears our cry. (v. 19)

The Lord will keep us. (v. 20)

The Lord hears our cry, so please continue to pray for this city and the world as they figure out how to handle this outbreak. Please also pray for my amazing co-workers at The Dale who are still out there working, preparing food, and checking in with people.

If you would like to know more about The Dale, check out our website: thedale.org

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