BCC Staying Connected Friday, April 24, 2020

Psalm 16; Exodus 16:23-36; 1 Peter 3:13- 4:6; John 16:1-15

I hope this finds all well and strong on another grey, April day.  The good news is the sun will shine tomorrow, and of course, the Son of God is risen!

One verse from the scripture listed above that particularly spoke to me today is:  “Bear in mind that the Lord has given you the Sabbath; that is why on the sixth day he gives you bread for two days.  Everyone is to stay where they are on the seventh day; no one is to go out.”  It sounds a little similar to what we’ve been hearing these days.  One way to capture the goodness of this time is to consider it like a sabbath rest so that in the end, more of us will be well.  In the midst of the sabbath rest, let us make the most of the time to connect with God, the people in our lives, and our own selves as the people God would have us to be. 

For the most part, the scripture I’ve been posting each day comes from the two year daily lectionary.  I move away from it on occasion if a particular verse comes to mind that seems most appropriate.  Two days ago on Earth Day, I had been meditating on Psalm 24 so I included it for the Psalm of the day.

Here comes the interesting part about God making connections with us as we connect with his word and one another. On the very day I kept meditating on the verse, “The Earth is the Lord’s and the fullness there of…”(Psalm 24:1), later on I joined a webinar sponsored by the Creation Justice Ministries of the United Church of Christ, and the preacher, Ben Chavis, titled his message, “The Earth is the Lord’s and the Fullness Thereof.”

This morning I received an email through the Central Association that a retired pastor in the Association died from complications from Covid 19.  He was there for me in my beginning in ministry with  the Connecticut Conference back in 1981.  I had lost track of him until coming into this Association, and I now I can be there for him through prayer in his beginning with all the saints who have gone before us.

Speaking of connections with the word and God and the people in our lives, I heard an interview this morning with a hospital chaplain on National Public Radio.   NPR has been doing a series called “Connections” where they connect people from different places with similar experiences and challenges due to the coronavirus.  The chaplain shared three passages that come to mind in what we are going through right now.  The first is Psalm 23, particularly, “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil for thou art with me.”  A second is the spiritual, “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands.  A third is a quote from Ernest Hemingway’s novel, “A Farewell to Arms.”  The scene is against the looming horror of a battlefield.  Many people see this invisible virus as a battlefield.  The quote is:  “The world breaks us all, but some grow strong in the broken places.”  

Speaking of connections, at the out brake of the corona virus, I started reading “A Farewell to Arms.”  The connection with that last quote is that all things break, and all things can be mended – especially when we do it together.  In these days of physical separation, let us do what we can to be well and strong in doing good for one another and our own lives.

May you experience Christ’s love throughout your day,

Pastor Tom