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Covid-19 and the Homecoming

By EMN Updated: Apr 13, 2020 11:49 pm

In the last couple of decades or so, we saw scores of young people migrating to major metropolis in India and beyond. Except for a few, the vast majority of them who leave their homes leave out of compulsion. The lure for better life out there and the pressure from within have made migration an unstoppable trend in our time. While the call comes ringing over the restless hearts from cities to send more workers, very little effort is being made from the home front to retain this productive group of people. After all, when we know the prospect of growing and developing at home is fast shrinking, the natural option is to move out and forage for survival in any place by any means. This factor of push from within and pull from without has triggered off a widespread migration of our youth to various parts of the country. In the process, little did we know that this “push and pull” dynamic would dislodge the socio-economic, geo-political and religio-cultural stability of our state.

Even so, more and more people were going out and business was going on as usual until the moment of truth came. Then like a bolt from the blue, a notorious virus going by the name Covid-19, dropped its bombshell in the middle of the show and took centre stage. Since then everybody’s attention and conversation in every gathering began to revolve around this much dreaded microscopic terminator. Our once happy-go-lucky generation is now slowly learning to come to term with the reality of life. You might like it or hate it, but we have to acknowledge that this invisible annihilator has brought big and powerful nations to their senses on the fragility and uncertainty of life. No human being in his proper frame of mind would want any sickness, but the moment it comes, or rather when it has come, it makes one think straight. This unwelcomed guest, whose entry into our body we strongly resist, should leave us immediately before we kick it out from our land and from this world. But humanity should not let this costly experience escape so easily without having our lesson learnt the hard way. We should begin the process of picking up the pieces and putting them together. Reflect on the brevity of life, slow down our pace, take a moment and smell the roses.

Well, while most hectic and active cities all over the world wear a deserted look and have turned into ghost towns, our villages and home towns are witnessing the resurgence of its population, following the mass exodus of its home comers. Until a couple of months ago, the idea of coming home had barely crossed the minds of many people. Now that they have nowhere to go and no one to take them in, returning home to their villages is the only option. Like the proverbial story about The Giving Tree that never stops giving, our villages have given us the best and sent us with the best and even when no city or country on earth wants us, our villages are always there to welcome us. The rugged and dusty footpath of our villages may be no match for the tiled walkways of the cities. The jam-packed country house cluttered and jumbled up with its old inhabitants may not be as spacious as the king-sized living rooms in cities; and yet it has room for every member. Small is big enough to accommodate anyone and everyone if only the heart of the host is big enough.

We know, at the end of the day, this long-drawn-out battle will surely come to an end. And a time will come when people will return to their former work places in different parts of the country. When that time comes and you need to leave, remember the villages into whose welcome gates you once walked and the people who ensured that your brief rendezvous with your loved ones was safe and secure. After all, home is where we go at last and we will surely come again sooner or later. It is just a matter of time. But friends, before our next homecoming is due, let us remember our own people in the villages and think of the condition in which they live.

Now, as regards our real home, having learnt our lesson from the school of suffering, we should not overlook the importance of the eternal home. Humanity has forsaken our Heavenly Father and has strayed too far into alien religion and culture. We have put too much of our confidence in wealth and in our own ability. Professing that we have come of age, and that we don’t need to linger any longer in our Father’s House, we have followed our own dreams into uncharted territories. We have squandered all our blessings in reckless living. At last, having arrived at the end of the road, the clock of human activity has finally come to a grinding halt and we are coming to our senses. That is the beginning of the process, not an end in itself. The good thing is that it has begun.

They say a journey of thousand steps starts with one. If we don’t drop halfway through the journey, we shall surely overcome someday and escape the claws of death although with an ugly souvenir already scratched deep into our hearts. The pillar of salt from the twin cities of Sodom and Gomorrah should stand as a signpost to remind us of the vanity of looking back. We should not be deterred by any element along the way. Our strength should come from realising the fact that our Heavenly Father is waiting for us day in and day out. He is all set to throw his arms of love around us and receive us to himself. Where He is there our home sweet home is also. I was glad when they said unto me, “Let us go to the House of the Lord.

Rev. Rümatho Nyusou

By EMN Updated: Apr 13, 2020 11:49:00 pm