Today is truly spring, and yesterday I discovered it at a time I really needed to find a breath of fresh air:
I did not plant this jonquil here. It is actually coming up with some wild onion that I have had before and cannot seem to get rid of.
So I was genuinely surprised to discover this flower blooming in the midst of the cedar mulch under the deck.
I needed this harbinger of spring because earlier that morning I had made the trek to Walmart in order to get my usual supplies. I knew there were issues with stocking, but still what I found was a shock.
There was no cereal except for less than a case of a couple of brands. Only one box or two of instant oatmeal.
There was no rice!
There were very few cans of vegetables.
There was no toilet paper as I had heard and discovered from other outings the weekend before.
Finding items was a challenge because not only is our local Walmart managing the pandemic, it is also going through a major remodel, so everything is everywhere.
I left shaken.
Throughout history humanity has faced crisis; we are not different. And there really is no reason we should feel protected from a global pandemic as the world comes right into our homes if by no other means than videos.
Then today, we took a long drive down to Truman Lake because it was sunny and pleasant. We would not interact with other people just by taking a drive, so why not?
The fishermen were still out on their boats despite the near freezing temperatures. The Sonic was delivering meals to the car windows as always. And there were cars, well more pickups and SUVs, on the road.
The small towns were ironically the same as they always appear. Even the little mom & pop restaurants seemed to be doing their normal lunch hour business. I almost felt like we were outside of the Center for Disease Control (CDC) parameters.
We all need to look for the little reminders that God’s world is filled with his glory. We need to see all the spring flowers popping out from the mud and grime of the wet, cold winter. We need to see the families outside in their yards–together. We need to hear the peepers as they announce spring.
And we all must realize that humanity is going to continue even though the going is extremely trying right now.
We must return to God’s scriptures and the story of how he joined us on earth as Jesus Christ, son of man and son of God.
Easter may not be what we expect this year. There may not be any worship service to attend. The Easter outfits may not get to be worn on April 12 as planned. The Easter Bunny may have to wait a bit before families and friends can get together.
But the good news is that God is good all the time and all the time God is good. We just need to look for the good. We need to hear how all the communities are finding new and inventive ways to love one another. We need to consider what we can do, too.
This Sunday, March 22, and the coming Sundays our churches are joining forces to fill the social media with church services. There may be more people “in church” this week than ever before thanks to the technology and the social media that has developed.
Sharing the good news will be a breath of fresh air along the airwaves right alongside the news broadcasts. Share with others in any way that you can the story of Jesus Christ.
Open up the computers, the tablets, the cell phones, and even the smart TVs and find the worship service of your own church or maybe someone else’s. You can visit as many as you want this week and during the coming weeks.
I think the on-line church service and devotionals is much like finding the jonquil blooming in the most unexpected place in my yard. May the services open up your heart and you experience the renewal of faith this first spring Sunday.
Please join me in prayer:
Thank you for the gift of spring.
Be with your children around this world
struggling with the angst filling today’s world.
Let us join together in worship
in any way we can, wherever we can
so we may experience
the joy of Christian community.
Guide us as we continue to move forward
through these uncertain times.
heal those who are sick;
protect those who rush to their aid;
and show us new and wonderful ways
of loving one another
so all may experience the transformation
that comes when we accept Jesus Christ. Amen.