I've always been fascinated by the amount of cross-promotion there is within media companies. I'm not just talking about the ads for shows on the same TV networks that you'll hear during a pro football game. That's one form, but at least that isn't subtle. There's all kinds of other stuff going on, and it's become a bit of a hobby of mine to see whether I can catch the more subtle stuff.
I shot a video today for my congregation, and am sharing it here as the post for tonight. Once you watch (it's only a few minutes), you can read more about it in John 16:1-33.
Jesus fulfilled the Old Covenant, keeping the law of God perfectly. He kept the Sabbath, the day of rest on the seventh day of the week. And now, we New Testament Christians, we are freed from needing to observe that day in the same was as ancient Israel. We now find our sabbath rest in Jesus (Colossians 2:16-17, Hebrews 4:8-10); we don't have to work to enter the rest of God.
One of the significant impacts of this pandemic is that people are physically distanced from each other. Well, duh, you might say, but stick with me for a minute.
For so many people, a handshake, a hug, a high-five, are so brief but so meaningful in terms of connection. There are reports out there (I’d look them up if I had more energy; if someone wants to source these for me, that’d be great...) that we need a certain amount of physical contact in a day to be healthy. Tragically, it’s reported that infants can even die without adequate physical touch.
I have exactly two minutes to post this before it's tomorrow. That's not going to happen. What else isn't going to happen is that I'm going to become legalistic about this thing. So tonight I share with you a couple videos I made today as we stepped into the world of live-streaming after it's become one of the only ways to reach groups of people. We all wish we could change the channel to watch something other than coronavirus and all the news around that.
I am out of any semblance of creativity tonight. As I'm sure many of you feel too, all of the stuff surrounding the last week has been, and is, exhausting. I'm so thankful that there is a God who never wearies of caring for me and for the whole world. I often begin prayers with thanksgiving that each day is a day when the mercies of God are new to us. That comes from Scripture, Lamentations 3.
The world is in crisis mode, and (to a large degree, at least) rightly so. Yes, there is panic and people are acting in panicky ways. That's to be expected, as much as is it frustrating and sometimes can seem silly or worse. When people are in crisis mode, panic is going to happen. We all want to think we're rational beings, but we're only rational to a certain degree.
This afternoon, during our closing prayer time of the church meetings I was at yesterday and today, I prayed for everyone travelling home (we had come from all over Alberta and BC) that God would give them mercy as they travelled. My drive home would be a 4-hour trip, with much of it being on a mountain pass, in the dark. That's a day-to-day, even hour-to-hour proposition this time of year, where the roads will be fine at one point and then not too long after, they can be treacherous.
I spent today with others in my church body from Alberta and BC, talking about the work of our church. Almost 12 hours of formal meetings, then another couple hours visiting and talking about the work of the church over flights at a micro-brewery next to the hotel (well, I had a cider...celiac disease and all that...but others had some good-looking beer flights).
Jesus spent 40 days in the wilderness (Matthew 4:1-11), fasting and preparing to be tempted by the devil. We're not told in Scripture what He did in that time, other than He fasted. He went without earthly sustenance, and even in reply to being tempted by bread, He said that people don't live only by bread, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.