I know my transgressions. . . .
— Psalm 51:3
When the COVID-19 pandemic started, everyone became more aware of the meaning of exposure. Exposure to the deadly virus was bad, something to be avoided. People didn’t want to be exposed.
But this virus turned out to be not only something we could be exposed to, but also something we could be exposed by. COVID-19 has exposed some troubling realities about our world that tended to be overlooked before. For example, excessive numbers of infections and deaths occurred in long-term care facilities, not just because elderly residents were more susceptible but also because “essential” staff, often ethnic minority workers, were underpaid and needed more than one job, making them more likely to spread the virus. Ethnic minorities also tend to have higher mortality rates because they have limited access to medical assistance. And from a more global view, wealthy nations have a surplus of vaccines while low-income nations have to deal with limited availability of vaccines. In these ways, some of our shortcomings and misplaced priorities in society and in global concerns have been exposed.
Biblically speaking, exposure can be a good thing, though, because it makes clear that we need to seek God’s mercy, to repent, receive forgiveness, and be restored. That’s good news in rough packaging!
O God, we are constantly exposed before you. Help us all to learn from reality checks like the pandemic so that by your grace we can be renewed. In Christ, Amen.