People who need people,
Are the luckiest people in the world”“People”
Jule Styne (music)
Bob Merrill (lyrics)
There words are from the 1964 song by Barbra Streisand. I have come to a greater understanding of the meaning during the past weeks. While I have been very grateful to keep in touch with my small group, my prayer team and my church family through Zoom, WebEx, Email and Streaming platforms, I have missed the physical connection. I miss the greetings and interaction with Billy and Carol every Sunday in “our” seats at Regal. I miss the hugs, laughter and discussion time with Otto, Sharon, Richard and others in our small group time on Wednesday. I miss sharing the joys and concerns of others during prayer time every Sunday with Dawid, Jane, Robert, et al. I miss hearing all of the voices together with the worship team in corporate worship time. I crave the actual physical interaction that comes with each of these groups. Hebrew 10:25 states:
“And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.”Hebrews 10:25 TLB
Attending church services has been a part of my life for years. But, I now realize how very precious that time together truly is.
The Pandemic has also highlighted a few other things in our lives (some good and some not so good.) We have seen firsthand how self-serving actions can cause others to suffer with the toilet paper shortage. Panic came to the forefront and hoarding was the name of the game. I’ve lived through a few hurricanes and floods that caused Houston to shut down. But, I don’t think I’ve ever see things quite as bad, especially when there were no real shortages. There were people out to make a buck through stockpiling, but there were also people that were willing to give. One example is “Katy Neighbors Helping Neighbors”, a Facebook page started to share needs. If someone need baby wipes, or formula, or cleaning supplies or anything else, they could post their need. Usually, someone would offer to share or knew a store that had it in stock. I saw LOTS of sharing and meeting needs on that site. Food pantries were stretched to the extreme, and people stepped up to help and meet the needs.
Families have been forced to be together. Kids are doing school on line from home. Parents may be working from home. There’s no escaping with restaurants only serving take-out and malls and movie theaters closed. I’ve seen parents step up and get involved with their kids school time. Game nights (or afternoons) have come back into style. This has been an opportunity to learn something new through on-line classes. I’ve heard of some grandmothers that have done sewing and/or cooking lessons with their grandchildren via facetime or other apps. There has been time for family walks or bike rides, family meals, or just family time.
How wonderful and pleasant it isPsalm 133:1 TLB
when brothers live together in harmony!
As we begin the process of reopening Texas and the rest of these United States, I hear mixed messages. There is frustration that things are not moving faster. And, there is the fear that we are moving too fast. I hear about the need to return to work as well as the complaints from those who receive more on unemployment than they do at their job. I see the excitement for the return of socializing mixed with concern over the continued social distancing guidelines. It’s easy to fall prey to fear and depression that accompanies the seemingly overwhelming task ahead of us. We are approaching a “new” normal. Masks will continue to be the accessory of choice for many. Hand-washing has moved up in priority (where it should have been all along.) I’ve joined the ranks of actually USING the hand-sanitizer I carry with me. Fist bumps will replace handshakes. Air hugs and kisses may be the “thing” for a while. We will survive this time. We will adjust. I refuse to give into fear mongering.
“So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.Matthew 6:34 TLB
What has your experience during the Covid-19 pandemic been? Have you found meaning in some of the “norms” that you took for granted. Have you spent time with your family and strengthened those ties? Are you ready to step back into the reopened world?
The Lord is my shepherd;
I have all that I need.
He lets me rest in green meadows;
he leads me beside peaceful streams.
He renews my strength.
He guides me along right paths,
bringing honor to his name.
Even when I walk
through the darkest valley,
I will not be afraid,
for you are close beside me.
Your rod and your staff
protect and comfort me.
You prepare a feast for me
in the presence of my enemies.
You honor me by anointing my head with oil.
My cup overflows with blessings.
Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue mePsalm 23 TLB
all the days of my life,
and I will live in the house of the Lord