Dear Friends,

Have you heard the expression, “When the world closes the door, the Lord cracks a window”?  When COVID-19 changed our reality, decrees and executive orders began to limit our access to one another as a form of “social distancing” to create mitigation from this virus.  Businesses, schools, universities, churches, and synagogues were deeply impacted as each of these depends upon the gathering of people.  A new normal was birthed from this epidemic, and as a return to normalcy is being discussed by our elected leaders, it is my prayer that we will not forget the lessons learned during this time.

Christian musician TobyMac recently said, “With church doors shutting across America, it is time for us to show that the church has never been about the building.”  This is exactly what has bloomed out of this situation.  As only He can, our God has made beauty from ashes.  A matter of weeks ago, the church was reduced to an empty building, devoid of devotional churchgoers and praise and worship music.  However, what arose was a church stronger than before.  Congregations are being moved to meet in hospital parking lots and pray.  Sunday School classes are “working together while alone” to create personal protective equipment such as masks for first responders and essential workers.  Small groups are preparing goodie baskets and dropping them off at nursing homes and other long-term care facilities.  Pastors and worship leaders are finding innovative ways to bring their Sunday morning worship opportunities directly to people’s homes.  All of these wonderful things point to one vital part of being the hands and feet of Christ: they are all person-centered and intentional.

Hopefully, gone are the days when we only talk to our neighbor when we run into them by happenchance at Walmart.  Currently, there is an advertising campaign aimed at giving comfort to those in isolation.  “We are all in this together” has been shared by celebrities and athletes online and on the television.  We must all be in this together every day, not just because of a global pandemic.

With love,

Steve