Many of us are looking forward to when they can get back to normal—back to work, school and ministry. Some are looking back to the good old days. Well, there is a reality we must all acknowledge. There is no going back…those days are gone. The world we once knew has changed. We have a wonderful opportunity go forward to the next normal.
"The tribe of Issachar supplied 200 leaders... They kept up-to-date in their understanding
of the times and knew what Israel should do." 1 Chron 12:32 ISV
Just as 9-11 permanently changed some things in our world so has Covid-19. The post virus-era is slowly revealing itself. The new normal is here. Things have already changed like the airline industry is reinventing itself making air quality in planes cleaner. Also work-place space has changed. Some of us will now work at home from now on. Business and relational interaction have gone online. So has ministry. Churches will maintain permanent online presence and impact. The next normal has already restructured us in many ways.
We are in a forced transition and transition by its nature means we must let go of something. For starters the old ideas of interacting with others. For church leaders the old way of ministering. For businesses the old ways and assumptions of doing business. For parents the old way we led our children and spouses.
For church leaders realizing that programs and activities are not the power of ministry. The focus of ministry is equipping to be disciples rather than in-person programs and events. This is an opportunity to ask what is your next normal? Is there a better way for me? We have an opportunity to restart, re-align and re-evaluate our processes and impact.
Let’s face it—the new is here. It doesn’t feel comfortable. It is the unknown and the unfamiliar. I wrote in 1999, in a book called Future Worship, that a new era was about to unfold and the world would not look the same again. "The coming digital age…will be focused on a new form of communication…reshaping our understanding of the Christian community.” Not only would the world change but pastors and worship leaders would lead differently and ministry would look different. Now we are being forced to embrace that new world—the virtual and the digital.
Some may ask, "Can we be spiritual and virtual?" The answer is yes. It is being forced on us and we have to ask why?
Our good and loving Heavenly Father has allowed this season for a reason and He has given us an opportunity for a checkup or a tune up.
What is it that God wants to do in you, in your family, in your ministry or in your business?
How does the next normal look for your family?
Will family dinner continue?
Will you still play and teach your children and be as involved in their lives?
Will you continue family worship and devotions?
Hang onto whatever good as come out of this period. It will be part of your next normal.