Statistics are showing that social distancing is working, And yet, we are still hearing stories of people, groups, and congregations rebelling against the directives given by our leaders.
Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Give to everyone what you owe them: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor. Romans 13:1, 7
In the social distancing and stay home directives, we are asked to give up many things. We are giving up routines and rituals, comforts and assurances, as well as some of the “stuff” to which we have become accustomed. Amazon boxes used to show up on my porch fairly often with books, office supplies, and some fun things too. My dog is missing the UPS treats!
It is interesting to notice my own reaction to the changes imposed on my life as a result of COVID-19. Sometimes a little rebellion, some frustration, some sadness, and some moody statements, “I didn’t need it anyway.” How quickly I shift into. “It’s going to be ok.” “It’s worth the sacrifice.” “Others have given up or lost so much more.” matters. Quite honestly, I did not need it anyway.
What is it that is prompting people to ignore the directives and leaders as they, too, navigate this unchartered territory? Withholding judgment and anger, I will not even speculate.
I miss my church. So, I light a candle, open my Bible, and imagine someone somewhere at that exact moment is reading scripture with me, and I pray with them and for them.
I miss my friends. So, I make calls, write letters, face-time when I can, and remember with compassion all those who felt alone even before all this began.
I miss the freedom to go wherever, whenever. So, I walk outside. Interesting how luxurious this feels now. I am mindful of those who are without even this.
I miss the exchange of hugs. So, I stop and pray for all those who have been lost or have lost loved ones to this virus.
Jesus knew very well the feelings of isolation and disconnect from those he needed for support.
He took Peter and the two sons of Zebedee along with him, and he began to be sorrowful and troubled. Then he said to them, “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me.” Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.” Then he returned to his disciples and found them sleeping. “Couldn’t you men keep watch with me for one hour?” he asked Peter. “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. Matthew 26:37-41
This is but a moment. Stay strong and keep watch.
As you read this, know that this day you are in my prayers. I am sending you love. I know with certainty you are not alone. God is with you. Prayer is our most significant connection. Close your eyes, breathe deep and feel the love surrounding you.