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December 3, 2020

“Comfort, O comfort my people, says your God. Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and cry to her that she has served her term, that her penalty is paid, that she has received from the Lord’s hand double for all her sins.” Isaiah 40:1-2

Seventy years. That’s how long God’s people were in exile in Babylon. Most of the people couldn’t even remember what Jerusalem was like before it was destroyed. They were born as aliens, strangers in the land they lived in, estranged from the land they called home. To these people the prophet speaks: Comfort!

Comfort, O comfort my people! So God speaks to us. We are no strangers to our own homes in these days, but we have become estranged to the world outside and separated from one another. How long will this time of social distancing last? By the way, I’m a little tired of that phrase. I can’t wait until we can be socially undistanced from the people we love.

I don’t know how long the pandemic will continue. I know it won’t be for seventy more years. Then again, I know that the next seventy years will bring myriad unforeseen challenges. But God speaks comfort to us. We spend time in exile; we have periods of separation. But God never leaves God’s people where they are. God will restore us. As we wait in Advent, may we wait with the hope that at some point this term will be served. We will return to the home that is relationship with one another even has God has restored us to life in Christ.

Be well, friends. You are loved.

Come, Lord Jesus, and comfort your people. Bring an end to this period of suffering. Give hope to those who feel lost. Use us to bring help to those who struggle financially, those who are sick, those who are mourning. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Image: Me and G in our Babylon VBS shirts, Slovakia, 2019. Oh, to be able to travel again!

From → COVID-19

One Comment
  1. Paul Haberstock permalink

    I was of the impression your Parish Nurse had a more favorable phrase than “social” distancing. Paul

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