Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Desert streams

Psalm 126:4-5  (CEB)

Lord, change our circumstances for the better,

    like dry streams in the desert waste!

Let those who plant with tears

    reap the harvest with joyful shouts.

I prayed the invocation at our City Council meeting last night, via Zoom.  It is always a blessing to be able to open that meeting with a word of thanks and a prayer for peace.

City Council meetings are not always exactly peaceful. Twice in every council meeting residents are given 3 minutes to speak their mind on whatever issue they wish to address, and sometimes those open mic periods get a bit heated.  Not to mention sparks flying when Council members disagree vehemently on one topic or another.  I’m sure it is easier to keep the peace right now, when no visitors are allowed in the council chamber, and part of the Council must attend via Zoom to ensure proper distancing, but residents can still speak their minds, on a speaker phone or by submitting their statement as an email.

One such email was read last night.  One of our residents was very upset that Selma’s number of Covid19 cases is second only to Fresno, which is a much larger city.  She begged the Council to please make it mandatory for everyone to wear masks when they are in public to help cut down on the risk of spreading the virus.  At present masks are recommended but not required in public, although individual businesses may require them of customers. I could definitely understand her pain.  Just in the few hours between the daily Department of Health announcement of total cases in the County and the City Council meeting, Selma’s number went from 239 to 255.

Lord, change our circumstances for the better.

On the news this morning an announcement was made that a common steroid has been found to help prevent death in the very worst cases, although it does not seem to help at all in less severe cases.   Still, this is a glimmer of hope in what was a rather dismal landscape, like the sight of an oasis in the distance - a stream in the desert waste.  Not quite the joyful shouts of the psalm, but definitely a whisper.  

Lord, change our circumstances for the better.   May our current tears and worries be transformed into streams of hope and shouts of joy.  Amen

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