O taste and see that the Lord is good;
happy are those who take refuge in him.”
During these challenging and difficult times, we are all looking for encouragement; maybe even something different, a new or revised focus. Brian McLaren wrote an article that got me thinking. We have read and heard frequently that we are all in this together. We are all connected, even when we don’t really recognize all that can mean. I used to think, as did many others, that we got sick and had diseases as individuals. However, we are realizing that’s not the case, really. We catch disease as individuals that are part of families, which are part of communities, regions, countries and world. It has become true that the whole globe can be changed; will be changed because of our interconnectedness.
As that becomes more and more obvious it can lead us into thinking about other viruses that also spread and cause damage. There are social and spiritual viruses that can, and often are, spread from individual to individual, generation to generation, and may not be named or acknowledged. Without naming specific illnesses, we can see that over time any kind of hostility that is spread based upon prejudice and fear can be included.
What might happen if we became as passionate about testing for social or spiritual illness as we have about the coronavirus? Maybe we begin to see an opportunity to change whatever we may do that causes you to suffer. We can be healed of these invisible harms that became part of human history. During this pandemic, many of us hear hopes for return to the old normal. Well, that’s not going to happen. Yes, we do want to get back to our favorite coffee shop, restaurant, church service, and visits. However, as we take a look back, we can acknowledge that some parts of the old normal weren’t that great. Jesus tells us, “behold, I am making all things new.” We can agree that’s often a special blessing.
As we deal with our discomforts during this time, let’s begin to passionately dream of a new normal. May that new normal address the weaknesses and problems that have gone unaddressed for too long. Let’s be wise and not go back; let’s go forward.
Hymn of Promise – v.2
There’s a song in every silence, seeking word and melody;
there’s a dawn in every darkness, bringing hope to you and me.
From the past will come the future; what it holds a mystery,
unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see.
O God, help us to see the path you would have us take to become more like a loving family. Grant us the courage to change, to share, to love more fully. In the strength of your Spirit, let us more closely follow your Son; our Lord and our example of what it can mean to be your child. Amen.
Rev. David Brosnan