Parenting in a Pandemic: A Half-Marathon? Or a Triathlon?


I bet you had this thought, back in March: “Okay, this totally stinks, but we can hack it.  I’ll be about July – maybe late-July – before things get back to normal.  So let’s buckle down.  Get it done.  Ride hard, now, and trust that in a few months, we can put all of this behind us.”  I thought this.  A lot.

But now, that hope seems – at best – naive; at worst, foolish.  Maybe your kicking yourself for believing that COVID-19 would just kind of magically go away.  Or maybe it’s worse: Life has only gotten more chaotic, at home, at work, with friends and family.  The seams are coming apart, or your life is already in tatters on the floor.

We all thought that COVID-19 might just be a half-marathon – a half-marathon that none of us were ready for, but one that we’d tough out, and tell our grandchildren about.

Friends, I have heard it said, and I believe it is true: This is not a half-marathon – it’s a triathlon, and we haven’t even finished the swimming part, yet (I had to look it up, too: Triathlon goes: Swim, Bike, Run.)

We are not just dealing with one kind of difficult – a half-marathon, but three kinds of difficult.  We don’t just have to get our children safely to the other side of COVID-19, we have to get our jobs, our marriages, you name it – to the other side, too.

I know this about people who train for triathlons (not because I am one of those people – I’m still working on going for a long walk each day!): Without strength and endurance, it does not matter if you know how to swim, bike, and run.  Strength and endurance, built over time, with dedicated times of rest and recovery, are the essential building blocks for a triathlete.  Yes, you may not have wanted it, but you are officially a COVID-19 “triathlete” now.

I’m obviously not about to give you a fitness regimen.  But, spiritually speaking, I know you’re going to need these, for your family, your job, and you, yourself: Prayer and worship.

The daily practice of prayer, and the weekly time of worship, are not the ways that God trains you for this difficult race – they are the times when he pours his Spirit into your heart, mind, even your body, so that you can go and do what must be done: Just keep swimming, just keep….


You can read the previous posts about “Parenting in a Pandemic”, here.

Have you started a business?  Are you trying to keep one afloat?  You might find this series on starting a church in a Pandemic, helpful.


Would you like to stay in touch?  I would love for you to subscribe to “Foundation and Fire”: If you’re on Desktop, the FOLLOW button is at the top, right corner.  If you’re on Mobile, it’s at the very bottom of the page.

Please join us – Foundation Presbyterian Church – for worship, in-person, Sunday, 10:30am at the Northwest Family YMCA, or online: Facebook | YouTube

We also have this, every Wednesday, for 10 minutes at 10:00am: “At Home with the Rev”. We have begun a new series called “Where God Makes All Things New: The Beatitudes”, which is about going deep with God to find – and live into – his blessing for you.  This is the first episode on “Blessed are the poor in Spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.” (Matthew 5:3)

Facebook | YouTube | Website: Foundation Presbyterian Church


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