Sunday, March 22, 2020

Journal of a Lockdown No. 10

The MRT has shut down its operations.

I worship at home, in front of the old HP Elitebook 2570p, which I've grown fond of. As I sing along the familiar tunes of Trust His Heart and Rejoice in the Lord, with Kuya Deni's guitar accompaniment, I imagine the warmth of fellowship through the firm handshakes, the warm smiles, the random consults as I walk in the small church sanctuary in Quezon City. It seems like a long time ago, when physically meeting together was the norm. Pastor Bob preaches on Romans 8:18-25 in a pre-recorded Youtube video. For believers, there is freedom from hopelessness. It's a message I need to hear. Despite the world's despair, there is sure hope in the Lord.

The death of the "young trainee" at the Philippine Heart Center reminds me that death can happen anytime. My friends fear for the loss of their lives. It happened to him, it can happen to anyone.

Heart Center executive director Dr. Joel M. Abanilla said in a statement:

“We can only question why this young trainee with a promise of a bright future as a would have been cardiologist had to be the one to go. We have no answers.

“Yet we rest on God’s reassurance that He reigns Supreme and that He is in control. We need to collect ourselves, no matter how heavy are hearts are and move on for the sake of those who continue to need our services now more than ever,” he added.

How true his words are, how biblical and inspiring.

* * *

Some good news. My two friends, both very dear to me, are negative for COVID-19. I can't imagine losing friends at this time.

* * *

Been reading John Updike's The Early Stories: 1953-1975. The piece, "Persistence of Desire," is about a young love forgotten and remembered in a clinic.

I'm taking this quote, the story's final sentence, out of context, but this is how I imagine I will react when the pandemic is over.

He became a child again in this town, where life was a distant adventure, a rumor, an always imminent joy.



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