How Covid Taught Me the Importance of Community | By Sarah Frey

Covid has challenged many of us so much in the past year, but through it all, my family has experienced the power of having strong prayer warriors in our corner.

My elderly aunt who has special needs was diagnosed with Covid-19 shortly after Thanksgiving. As a result, the people that usually provide for round-the-clock care were not allowed to attend her until after she was out of quarantine.

My dad volunteered to go and stay with his sister to help her with her day-to-day needs. After 14 days of caring for her, my dad came home and sure enough, he began running fever and was soon diagnosed with Covid as well. Other than a cough and a fever, he did not feel too terrible, but out of caution, he tried his best to isolate from my mom by wearing a mask in the house and sleeping in a separate bedroom. It seemed to work for the most part, until it did not.

At the very end of my dad’s quarantine (I’m talking day 14), my mom started running a fever and feeling achy. At this point, Covid had been in my family for 28 days, and it was December 21. We were all tired of Covid, Christmas was not going to happen, and now my mom, who is the glue that holds us all together, was sick.

We assumed that her case would be similar to the other two cases. We were wrong. About a week after her initial diagnosis, her oxygen levels plummeted, and she had to be taken to the ER. The doctors gave her an IV and put her on oxygen. Because of the nature of this virus, she was all alone. Not even my dad could be with her. The doctor came out into the waiting room to talk to dad about the seriousness of mom’s condition. She had heavy pneumonia in both of her lungs. The doctor told us they were doing everything they could to make her comfortable, but at this point, all we could do was pray.

Now when a doctor tells you that all you can do is pray, your first thought is being thankful that this doctor is a believer, but your second thought is WAIT WHAT?!?! All we can do is pray?!?! Surely there is something else that can make mom better again! I needed to be able to DO something.

Maybe I could just go sit with dad while he waited? No, he was still carrying the COVID germs.

Maybe I could go pack up a bag of clothes for my mom? No, their house was still full of COVID germs.

Maybe I can bring my mom a nice hot meal? No, nothing goes in or out of the COVID ward.

There was literally nothing I could do but pray. However, I could not pray. I was so emotionally and mentally exhausted; I was so full of frustration and turmoil. I could not do it.

Even now, months later as I reflect on those nights, I am not sure why I could not pray. Had the devil gotten his claws of doubt into me so deep that I could not commune with My Lord? Was I just afraid to ask God because I was afraid He might say no? Whatever it was, I knew that the call to prayer had to be answered, but I could not do it.

I reached out to my sisters in my young moms’ bible study, and I reached out to my sisters here at Unveiling Eden. These prayer warriors responded and recruited other prayer warriors. Pretty soon there were people across the nation and across the ocean praying for my dear mother.

And, dear reader, my mother was taken off oxygen after 4 days and sent home breathing on her own. She says the peace she felt during those nights alone in the hospital was inexplicable. Her body was able to relax and do the fighting it needed to do.

I knew there was going to be some soul searching after all of this was over. I knew there was a lesson to be learned. When my mom needed my prayers the most, I could not pray, Recently God led me to a passage out of Exodus that put this into perspective for me.

Exodus 17:9-13 (GNT), “Moses said to Joshua, “Pick out some men to go and fight the Amalekites tomorrow. I will stand on top of the hill holding the stick that God told me to carry.” Joshua did as Moses commanded him and went out to fight the Amalekites, while Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. As long as Moses held up his arms, the Israelites won, but when he put his arms down, the Amalekites started winning. When Moses' arms grew tired, Aaron and Hur brought a stone for him to sit on, while they stood beside him and held up his arms, holding them steady until the sun went down. In this way Joshua totally defeated the Amalekites.”

God called Moses to hold his arms up over the Israelites during battle. This was to secure the fate of God’s chosen nation. And yet, in this crucial time, Moses’ arms got tired. By the time my mom was admitted into the hospital, COVID had been in my family for five weeks; not to mention that like everyone else in the world, we have been dealing with COVID in some form since March. I was tired. I had been taxed and tried in ways I had never been before. Sometimes God calls us to do big things like lead a nation, and sometimes God calls us to do simple things like pray. And sometimes we get tired. Moses is a patriarch of our faith, and he got tired during a crucial moment. It happens. You are not alone.

The other big takeaway here is that you need to have people in your life that can hold your arms up when you are weary. You need Aaron and Hur in your life. God has plans that we may never understand, and we cannot always see the end results. However, even when we grow tired, we have to follow through when God calls us to something. God’s kingdom is a marathon journey, not a sprint. You will grow tired, but be prepared for that by gathering a team around you to lift you up as you do God’s work.

“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor. If either of them falls down, one can help the other up.” Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 (NIV)

I recognize that my family was one of the lucky ones. My mother survived and came home to us. We celebrated Christmas in February. I am so thankful to still have my mother that I call her almost every day. To the families that are not as fortunate as mine, I cannot pretend to fully know your pain, but you have my sympathy. To the ladies at Unveiling Eden, Pearls, and all the other prayer warriors across Louisiana and farther, thank you for being my Aaron and Hur.

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