Monday Mailing 8

May 11, 2020

The “We’re still at this?” edition.

Yes, we are still at this.

Starting the ninth week, I thought it might be good to do a Top Ten (ala David Letterman) Things I’ve Learned During Covid-19.  I know, I have to stop writing these Monday Mailings on Monday morning when even the steady stream of coffee has yet to affect my sluggish brain. But, here goes:

Number 10: Remember those social media memes, the ones with the cabin in the mountain pictured that said something like: How many of you would live in a cabin with no internet, for a year, for $1,000,000.00? We all lied. . .none of us could do that. . .our hair would get too bad. At least we know that now. That is why we offer grace to those who cannot seem to stay inside – away from others! There have been times when I have just gotten in the car and driven somewhere. . .anywhere. . .because I needed to get out of the house. Be honest with yourself and others about what you want, and what you need. (Look for those later in the list.) 

Number 9: Repeat after me: It is not about me. So much in our lives we imagine to be all about us. . .that we are the ones in charge. . .that we are the ones who are right. . .(and therefore, someone else is wrong). . .we have all the answers. Reality is more like this: life is much more complicated than all that, it is not all about me. As we know, I can feel fine and still be a carrier of Covid-19. My coughing and sneezing may be more about Covid-19 than my seasonal allergies. (But rest assured, I am fine, itchy eyes and all. . . welcome spring. . .please.) I still may be feeling fine, but am able to pass the virus along to those I love who are at higher risk of getting the disease. If you need a real jolt, ask yourself this: how would I feel if I gave <the name of your loved one> this virus and it was fatal? Sobering, yes. It is not about me. . .it is about everyone else.

Number 8: Masks are good. See Number nine. Wear your masks. Be creative with your masks. Masks=good.

Number 7: We have mastered ordering groceries for ourselves. How about having groceries delivered to the Food Pantry? Talk to Cindy Schultz.

Number 6: Wants and Needs. I want: things to go back to the way they were. (Reality here. . .they won’t.) I Need: to learn how to embrace the way things are now, and how they may change even more in the future. (Did you see what I did there? I re-framed the question. . .and in doing so began to consider other things than just what I know for myself. Try it: I want to go out without a mask. I need to protect the vulnerable with whom I might come in contact. Re-frame the question of wants and needs. See 8, 9, & 10) 

Number 5: Be a little bit silly. Wear those funny earrings, or that tiara, or the shirt that says something wonderful. I am currently wearing a floral “do rag” of sorts on my head and my new t-shirt which says: Energy Intelligence Imagination Love #WeAreTheChurch.  For a Monday, I feel great! 

Number 4: Stop apologizing. We are apologizing for entering a Zoom meeting late, for our hair or makeup not being done, for our pets bombing us during worship (Riggaletto obviously loves you all, and will continue to be joining us for worship)
. . . you get the idea. Even though this week begins the third month of our staying put, we haven’t learned what it means to be home like this – eating, working, lounging, educating. . .it is still new to us, each and every day. AND WE ARE GOING TO FALL SHORT every day. . .in some way, so stop apologizing and recognize that there is great grace in abundance! 

Number 3: Keep making those connections. In addition to the work related Zoom and Facebook Lives, I connect with two groups of people every week. . .a group of us who were grad students all together a million years ago, and a family that proclaimed me theirs after my mother had died. We are keeping connected. . .and it restores my soul. . .enlivens my spirit. Last week I got a piece of mail from a clergywoman I do not know, but we are in an international clergywomen’s group and she wrote me a note. It meant the world. 

Number 2: Humor is a good thing. A Really Good Thing. A SPECTACULAR thing, especially in the midst of the chaos. I have love appreciated the humor of The Holderness Family (The Holderness Family creates original music, parodies, and Vlogs for YouTube to poke fun of themselves and celebrate the absurdity in circumstances most families face in their day to day life.) Find them on their YouTube Channel  . . .and prepare to guffaw! They really are pretty funny, and have nailed it with their interpretations of life amidst Stay at Home. The other thing I follow is SGN.  Actor John Krazinski and his family debut a weekly video about Some Good News (SGN) in the world. It is usually about a 20-25 minute segment which highlights the good news in our world in the middle of all that is challenging us. There are things to laugh at, and things which will warm your heart, and let’s face it, we need both right about now.

Number 1: Faith, Hope and Love, abide these three, but the greatest of them is love. Love, love, love even more. . .this day and always. Love. (First Corinthians 13)

Peace be with you!

Pastor Janice