A few days back, I was sitting on the front porch of the parsonage and noted the happy singing of several robins, cardinals, and bluebirds (at least they were the ones I could identify). I thought to myself about all those birds, “You have no idea what is going on in the world, do you?” The correct answer is they most likely do not. They’re thinking about one thing – “Let’s eat!” Winter and spring are now in the past, some are keeping their babies fed in their nests, and still others have already sent their babies out into the big bird world. Still they must eat. They must keep up their own strength.
Truthfully, I don’t really know what birds think, otherwise I could reasonably be considered “bird-brained”, but the scripture that immediately came to mind was a reminder of why birds sing so joyfully: “Look at the birds of the air . . .” With those words from Jesus in his Sermon on the Mount, the Holy Spirit reminded me that I was really the clueless one. If the birds don’t worry neither should I. Here is more of what he said: “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? Matthew 6:25-27 (NKJV)
Here is my point, and what we need to constantly have in mind: no Christ Follower should allow worry and/or anxiety to consume them. Yes, we can be concerned about a terribly contagious virus called Covid-19 that we thought would be subsiding by now, but instead is still sweeping the globe, killing thousands, endangering the more vulnerable members of the population, and making so many hundreds of thousands miserably ill. But, we serve an all-powerful God whose eye is on the sparrow and we know he watches over us too.
Speaking for myself, I’m tired! But you may say, “how can you be tired, Pastor? You’re not doing that much.” Oh, it’s not so much a physical tired as it is mental, emotional, even spiritual. I miss the ways things used to be. Can we all just be honest with ourselves? I want church back like it used to be. I want us all to gather INSIDE God’s house, sing the songs of worship, hug and love one another, and I want to pastor. I want to visit your homes, sit at your tables, drink coffee on your porch! That was my promise to you when we came to HUMC. But, except for a few instances here and there, I can’t keep my promise to you. I can’t do all those pastoring things. Covid-19 has disrupted all of our schedules, all of norms and routines. But as much as all this causes me consternation, I’m reminded that God doesn’t change. He’s the same yesterday, today, and forever! And just like His eye is on the sparrow, His eye is also on you and on me- even during this time of change and disruption. Through it all, I just have to look for alternative ways to show that Godly love to others through whatever means possible- even when that means not being physically with the ones I love.
So, in the midst of this pandemic that has caused the world to come to a screeching halt, and has brought so much disruption of every kind, let’s remember whose we are and whom we serve. And as we do, let’s be contagious in our own way by spreading the Good News of the One who causes the birds to sing for joy.