The current circumstances, though alarming, should present opportunities for us to deepen our relationship with Jesus. Terms like “social distancing,” “flattening the curve,” and “quarantine” have become common, used daily. Zoom has never seen so much traffic. Americans are wearing masks to go out in public. Our hands have never been so clean. Church doors have closed, many without a date for reopening. Like one sign that I recently saw that said, “The church has left the building.” But you know what? In some ways this has actually turned out to be a good thing. With modern technology we have realized that we can reach many people who might never come into a church building. But now – because of the situation – are searching for answers, and attending online church. Eventually this coronavirus will be contained, it’s stresses will be relieved, and life will get back to normal – though a new normal. What does the new normal look like? It’s still to early to tell. But we can’t go back to where we were.
The new normal will be different. I suggest you use this time to refocus. It begins with you. Your temporarily restricted freedoms can serve as a reminder to deepen your commitment to reaching the world with the gospel. Our world needs Jesus, America needs Jesus, and Ouachita Parish needs Jesus. Our lights should be shining brightest right now. Study your Bible, take time to pray, and reach out to people. Show others that you care. There are still ways to “visit” while social distancing. A simple phone call, or FaceTime can make someone’s day. Zoom is a really simple way to get groups together, and stay connected. Be sure to make our online service a priority. Be prepared. Be on time. Be ready to worship. Sing out loud. Psalm 100 – Says to “make a Joyful noise.” Or some versions say “Shout joyfully” “Come before Him with Joyful singing.” It doesn’t say you have to be a good, it just needs to be Joyful. 1 Thessalonians 5:16 – Says “Rejoice Always.” I simply say
– Choose Joy. Today and every day.