This week, barring any technical problems as experienced last Sunday, we will worship together via the livestream broadcast. Technology, for which we are grateful, and which provides us the opportunity to gather virtually, does present some anxious moments when a component fails as it did last week. But, it can also provide a time to consider all things and become more positive and optimistic. As I reflect on last Sunday and the livestreaming glitch, I also remember the twenty-seven consecutive Sundays since the middle of March on which we were all able to worship together virtually, and how they were a part of keeping us connected. Focusing on the good and successful times can in fact help us appreciate them even more when something beyond our control stops us in our tracks.
We all have many new and different experiences, some good and some not so good, upon which to reflect as we persistently make our way through the pandemic dealing with a variety of challenges along the way. There are those facing tremendously large challenges and others whose difficulties pale in comparison. As I reflect on it this week, I think of the many life-changing, even life-threatening, issues many of you are facing. Family and friends who are grieving over the loss of loved ones during the pandemic, or perhaps those who have loved ones who are losing their independence due to physical or mental health issues come to mind. Still others are dealing with chronic illnesses and pain; invasive surgery to replace joints, to repair an organ, or remove a malignancy. All of these are a part of living, a part of being human, whether we are the individual affected or just close to the person.
This is a time for us to appreciate the relationships we have with each other. A time for those of us able to walk alongside and encourage those who are facing great challenges in life, to pray for them, to give them support and to help us all maintain hope. It is a time for us to realize that God has blessed us with one another to live and experience life in community with one another and with God.
Please take a few moments today and think of your church family, giving thanks for them and praying that they will be encouraged by the prayers offered.
Wednesday evening, we will meet virtually for our weekly time of prayer and study. I hope you will join your church family for all, or part, of this time together. We begin at 6:00 p.m. and look forward to seeing all able to attend.