Reflecting on life, faith and our future during this Stay-Home Order
By Amanda Kassab

It’s no secret that everyone is struggling during this difficult and questioning time, but being a young adult who is working full-time and going to graduate school makes this time even more stressful.

I know I’m not the only one who is balancing so many different responsibilities while thinking about what is happening in the world, but the one thing that has kept me sane is my faith.

With churches being closed, it is hard to keep up my faith the way that I’m used to, but there are some things that have helped me throughout this time. One thing that has been a blessing is masses being offered every Sunday where I can pretend I’m with my church family and celebrate mass the way I am used to. I’m thankful that our dioceses have put in the effort to make sure we are still receiving Jesus under these circumstances.

I know that my day is packed with tasks to do for work, attending lectures online, and completing homework, but the one thing I always make sure to make time for is journaling. Every night before bed, I open my “Jesus Calling” book to the correct date and reflect on what is written. There is a page for every day with a message to reflect on along with certain Bible verses. I take the time to thoroughly read the message, reflect on what is being said, and write down my thoughts for the day.

Most of the time I don’t even realize what I’ve written until I’m completely done and I surprise myself by connecting the little things that have happened throughout my day with the message I’ve read. Not every day has to have a profound thought or something symbolic, but when we give ourselves the time and space to be open and honest with how we feel, Jesus will present himself and get us through it. It is easy to put our energy into feeling angry, upset, sad, and stressed out about this time and what we have to go through, but we should be putting that energy into thanking God for the blessings we have every single day.

As a young adult, I should be enjoying this time with my friends, enjoying the work that I do, and putting all I can into getting my Masters, but instead I’ve found myself alone most of the time with only my thoughts. Even though this is not an ideal situation to be in, I’ve found comfort in putting my thoughts into writing and reflecting on scripture every night. For example, the message that was presented in my book for today was, “Do not resist or run from the difficulties in your life. These problems are not random mistakes; they are hand-tailored blessings designed for your benefit and growth. Embrace all the circumstances that I allow in your life, trusting Me to bring good out of them. View problems as opportunities to rely fully on me.”

To some, this message may not seem like a big deal, but I know that in my personal life this pandemic has given me the time to be with my family that I normally would not have. My brother (who is my only sibling) and I have very busy lives and since we are both forced to work from home, we have more time to spend with each other, and I wouldn’t have been given that under normal circumstances. It’s small things that can make a big difference in your everyday life and the only person we have to thank for them is Jesus.

Amanda Kassab is a single 26-year-old with her Bachelor’s Degree in English and a minor in History. She is currently working on her Master’s Degree in Elementary Education. “I love connecting with people through music, books, quoting Friends, and my faith,” she notes.