It hit me with a rush of emotions on Friday afternoon, just how much has changed. My 4-year-old daughter and my 6-year-old niece are interacting over FaceTime, playing happily. I hear mostly one side of the conversation from the kitchen while she delightedly runs from the library, where the iPad is, to her bedroom and back again countless times. They play away and have seemingly adapted to this new normal where we all hunker down here while sickness passes.
Then Abby, playing the Mama in the role playing scenario they have going, says, “Sweetie, let’s go to church!”
They’re playing that we can all go to church together.
They’re playing like all is well.
I’ve heard the words “cowona viewus” “pretend” and “let’s go!” from the lips of a lisping 4-year-old.
“Did you know that a viewus is something that goes through the land and people don’t want it in their bodies, so people stay in their homes so they don’t get it in their bodies and they don’t give it to others?”
So now I’m standing at the kitchen counter in tears while precious little girls pretend that all is well and the world isn’t broken. They play that they’re going to church, when the fact is that, nationwide, people will gather in a completely different way this Sunday.
I realize that this is the first time I’ve actually cried about all this.
This brokenness, this sickness, this shuttering and sheltering and social distancing, is proof that we were made for something different. For something more. This is not the way things were meant to be. It’s important that we recognize that, that we declare it and say it out loud. When God created this beautiful world, He declared it “very good,” and this pandemic is not good.
This is not how it was meant to be. And this is not how it ends.
Someday, all will be made right. Someday, all will be made whole. Every twinge of concern and sadness that you and I have felt this past week is evidence that we were made for something different. As believers, we have confidence that Jesus will rescue and restore. He will make all things right and all things new. And until then, He will use you and use me to be His hands and feet and heart to those hurting around us. So I wonder, How can I share love today?
“And he who was seated on the throne said, ‘Behold, I am making all things new.’ Also he said, ‘Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.’ ” (Revelation 21:5)
Know this: church is not cancelled. Church is not closed—buildings are closed. You are the church. I am the church. Together, we are the Church.In the words of Abby, we’re going to join “our favorite pastor Kirk Freeman” from our living room this morning.
If you’re looking for a place for church, join us online!
How are you going to be the Church today, dear one?