This social distancing thing is taking its toll on many of us. As human beings, God made us to be social beings, meant to live in community with each other. Even one of the two greatest Commandments is to “love your neighbor as yourself” (Matt 22:39). So, how can we love our neighbor, if we are staying inside our homes?
Our “New Normal”?
We like to gather together to work, play and worship as community. So, this coronavirus has really put a kink into our lifestyle. At work, difficult discussions always have the best outcomes when meeting face to face. When at home, we live for the hugs and kisses, the interactions from sports, and the chats with neighbors across the picket fence. At church services, we come together, united in spirit, to worship God as one family, sharing the sign of Peace, and drinking from the cup.
Life seems to have been turned upside down. We now work alone, using technology to interact in meetings. Or, we are unemployed. We live low-key lives in our homes, constantly disinfecting surfaces. It’s not safe to get too close to anyone else. We watch Sunday services online, but without receiving the Eucharist, the source and summit of our faith. There is no one to give the sign of Peace to, so we just sit in front the computer, praying for an end to this pandemic.
Love Your Neighbor, From Afar
How can we live up to Christ’s call to “love your neighbor” in our current situation? Here are a few suggestions for you to consider:
- Work: Do your best to start each meeting by allotting a few minutes to ask how everyone is getting by. Show empathy and understanding, and give your fellow co-workers a break if something doesn’t get done on time, or as well as you would like.
- Unemployed: Reach out to that person, either by phone, or online, and let them know that you are there for them. If you are in a position to help financially, do so. If not, offer to pray for them.
- Home: Make happy memories: Bake cookies. Play board games. Watch good movies. Pray as a family.
- Worship: Continue to keep the Sabbath holy by attending church services online. Even if your Church does not have the capability to offer online services, use the internet to find a church that does offer services. Share the link with fellow church members.
We may be social distancing for a while, but that doesn’t mean that we should stop loving our neighbor. Now, more than ever, we need each other. So, be there for each other. Just love your neighbor, from afar, so that when this crisis passes, we can once again, love as God intended us to love – with hugs and kisses!
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