With the current predicament of the world right now due to the coronavirus, people are required to stay at their homes to prevent it from further spreading. We can only go out to take care of the essentials such as buying groceries, food, and other supplies, and even then it is better recommended to just have them delivered at your doorstep instead of stepping out.
I remember before the pandemic hit, I already had my vacation plans all set out for the year. In my calendar I planned out my first anniversary celebration with my girlfriend, a 7-day trip to Japan with my family, my girlfriend’s sister’s wedding in Tagaytay, and a beach trip after said wedding with their whole family complete. Everything was already set, and now everything has changed.
So now begs the question, is there even any significance in having vacation leaves? Since we can’t go out for vacation we don’t really need those days off, right? Well this is where the value of leave comes into the light. The value is not in the destination, or the grandeur of an event, it is in the meaningful relationships with your loved ones and the enjoyment of rest.
I knew this beforehand, but I would be open to admit that I tend to forget this lesson from time to time. The leaves I even planned for this year are for my family and friends. But back in previous years, I used to sacrifice those special days with the family in favor of a planned out getaway with not-so-close friends. I would continue to go to work instead of use up a leave for a lunch party at home. It was enjoyable to have that vacation, and I loved exploring new places and trying out new experiences, but sometimes it was at the cost of stagnating my relationship with my family and closest companions.
Realizing what I lost, the leaves that I’ve been taking lately are not for vacations, but for the sweet moments that I didn’t take leaves for before. Finally getting to celebrate Mother’s and Father’s day at home, cooking up a wonderful meal for my brother and sister, preparing a surprise visit to my girlfriend and her family for the weekend. All of these I did while still in the confines of my home, following all the necessary precautions in case I made visits, and took care of proper quarantine and all. The beauty of leaves is now in the intimacy you get with the people you love the most.
Don’t miss out the second reason for leave: rest. This is not the ordinary rest where you relieve yourself from your stress at work and the pressures of life. You can’t do an ordinary rest since you can’t easily pamper yourself with the current restrictions. No home massage services, no drinking night out with your buddies, no extra sleep off since you’re already at home anyway. What you seek instead is the extraordinary rest, coming from one source only; in Christ
In Him we find the perfect rest. In prayer we are able to lift up all our worries in life and hardships at work. In reading His Word we are reminded of His promises for us that He has us secure even during tumultuous times. We are able to attain peace just being at home with Him.
The vacation left, but the leaves did not, as we still have these leaves to cherish precious moments, to bond with our families and closest friends, and to abide in our God. Halfway through the year, I’ve already used up more than half of my leaves, and I’m glad that I did.