It was only a few months ago that I found myself longing to turn to my favorite news sites and to read something other than COVID. Today I’m reminded of the warning to be careful what you pray for.
Haiti. Cuba. Lebanon. South Africa. Iraq. From presidential assassinations to political uprisings, it feels as if these parts of the world are on fire. Closer to home, dentists are saying there has been a marked increase in teeth grinding and general practitioners have reported an uptick in chronic stress related illnesses.
All of the above are perhaps not directly related to the pandemic, but it wouldn’t take much to find a causal relationship between the two. Speaking of relationships… there is no doubt this has also spilled into our relationships with one another as well. Divorce rates may have dropped during the pandemic as people clung to one another, but experts expect a surge as we re-enter our new reality. The “great resignation” suggests folks have had months to examine their commitments to work and volunteer opportunities and will take the next few months for rebalancing. It’s as if the world has gone topsy-turvy.
I anticipate things will be a bit antsy these next few months within our congregations as well. The time we’ve spent away from our buildings may have raised questions of value and purpose and power. We’re questioning anew not just what we do as the church, but who we are.
Don’t run from those questions.
These last 15 months of doing something differently have taught us much about what it means to be the church… if we are willing to take time as leadership to digest that information. Don’t miss this opportunity: God willing, it won’t happen again.