THIS Lenten season, let us revisit how the world was prior to the Covid-19 pandemic. Rewind, and then play. The internet is supposed to be the right connection to connect right. How did we use social media? Prevalent were identity theft, hacking of bank accounts and government agencies, spreading of fake information, bashing, online prostitution, drugs and human trafficking, and the most shameful of all cybercrimes—when some parents engaged their children in cybersex with pedophiles.
We entered into all kinds of addiction: Drugs, alcohol and internet gaming. Upgrading gadgets forced the young to commit crimes. Abortion and euthanasia were considered justifiable options.
Children were kidnapped for their internal organs. Fake products included medicines. Traders forgot their social responsibility with hoarding and overpricing.
Terrorism resulted in distrust among ethnic and religious groups; Encroachment of sovereign rights of other nations; Invention of nuclear weapons that will annihilate mankind. Corruption destroyed world leaders. Almost half of the world’s population suffer extreme poverty and hunger.
Some temples and other places of worship were bombed and desecrated. Racism and other forms of slavery continued.
A number of pastors and priests got involved in child abuse cases and in corruption charges. Clinics in Taiwan and elsewhere conducted sex-change operations. Transgender and same-sex marriages resulted in so much confusion. Live-in relationships and divorce redefined the sacred union between husbands and wives. Increasing statistics of teenage pregnancies alarmed the world.
Almost all mundane activities eventually stopped with the “Stay Home” order. Everything is in suspended animation. Coronavirus, a silent killer, scared the rich and poor, young and old, educated and unschooled, businessmen and consumers alike. Businesses are closed. Millions face job insecurity, suspension of classes, cancellation of entertainment and sports events. Personal protection equipment and respirators are running out. Some countries resort to euthanasia. Thousands of lives lost to Covid-19. The world economy is at its lowest.
When will this pandemic end? Coronavirus has no timeline.
When hell freezes, what else can we do except to pause and reflect? In Proverbs, “There are many plans in the minds of men but it is the Lord’s purpose that will stand.”