Be Contagious in a Good Way, from the Heart of the Minister Feb 2021

Be Contagious in a Good Way

Life has been mighty hard lately; so, aren’t we all ready for something to change? One of my favorite hymns is Let There Be Peace on Earth.  If you are familiar with it, you know the next line is….and let it begin with me.  But there aren’t any instructions in the hymn on how to do that.

PP (prior to the pandemic) instead of giving up something for Lent, I would try to add something.  Hold the door for the person coming out of the store behind you.  Help someone with a large grocery order put the bags in his or her trunk;  and the easiest one of all….smile at people.  Say hello, have a nice day.  More times than not, the other person will smile back, hold the door for the person behind him or her, say hello back to you.  See???  It’s contagious!

Fast forward to DP (during the pandemic)  We are all wearing masks.  You can’t tell if someone is smiling or sticking their tongue out!  You step back at the end of the aisle in the grocery store to let someone else pass by but they don’t see that kind smile on your face.  How do they know you are trying to be neighborly?  In the Prayer of St. Francis, he asks to be an instrument of peace.  Francis isn’t praying to have peace himself.  He is asking to be the instrument.  Let your peace pass through me to someone else.  These days are different – standing 6 feet apart, no hugs or shaking hands, and the first impression someone gets of us is hidden behind a mask.

We need to shake things up a bit and step out of the box where we are safe, protected and alone.  The rest of the world is outside of your box so step out in faith.  Find a way to project your neighborliness. Even though Lent is several weeks away, why not start now to make that sacrifice of adding something to every day instead of giving something up.  Drop a “Thinking of You” card in the mail to someone you haven’t seen or spoken to in a long time.  Pay for the person behind you in the fast food line. Take your neighbors’ trash can back to their house after the trash truck passes.  Ask your elderly neighbor if you can pick up a book for them at the library.

Life is different now.  We can’t live like we always did and expect to fit in with the new way. We need to change.  Don’t wait for life to get back to normal….this is normal now.  We have to catch up and move slightly ahead.  Ask God to be His instrument, and it wouldn’t hurt to ask Him just how He wants you to do that!  Did I hear an Amen??!!

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