Friday, November 20, 2020

Endure Joyfully

Colossians 1:11-12. NRSV

May you be made strong with all the strength that comes from his glorious power, and may you be prepared to endure everything with patience, while joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has enabled you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the light.

Lately we have been hearing a lot about something called “Covid Fatigue.” This is not to be confused with the fatigue that is one of the symptoms of Covid19.  Covid Fatigue is more like cabin fever.  After 8 months of lock downs and restrictions and statistics and arguments over masks and all of that, we are just tired of it all.  But . . . I live in Fresno County in California.  Our positivity rate and rate of hospitalizations has been increasing so we have just been put back in the most restrictive tier with no clue when the numbers will come back down.  They have even instituted mandatory mask wearing outdoors (if you are near humans) and a curfew from 10pm to 5am.  

The change in our tier status means among other things, there is to be no in-person, indoor worship. And we were this close to coming back to worship in our sanctuary.  We were planning to gather in person on November 29th, the First Sunday of Advent.  We had it all planned.  *sigh*   

Some people have had enough.  They have decided they are done with all that staying home stuff.  They are going to family Thanksgivings anyway. They are going to gather indoors for worship anyway.   They justify these decisions by saying things like, “You can’t hide from the virus.  Everyone is going to catch it anyway so you might as well get it over with.” And my personal favorite, “The Sheriff announced they would not be enforcing these restrictions.” 

I get being impatient, I really do.  Paul did, too.  So he suggests that we endure with patience, upheld by God’s strength.  He says that we should give thanks to God joyfully for being there to strengthen us, for being our rock when we are unsteady.

I really would like to get a pedicure and go shopping for myself and go to church in person and hug my friends.  But it’s not time for those things yet.  So I need to do this shelter in place thing a little longer - one more day, at least.  I will be patient, and give thanks to God for that patience and the strength to endure one more day . . .until finally the restrictions are dropped, the danger is lessened, and the time is right. 

Holy God, I am so tired of being in the house.  I miss driving my cute little car, and getting my nails done, and eating in restaurants. I miss being with my church family. I miss being able to worship in our beautiful sanctuary.  Strengthen me, I pray, to endure the loss of these things for another day, and remind me that where ever I am, there you are also.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

No comments: