Sent March 11, 2020
As this message is being sent, there is not yet a confirmed case of coronavirus in Sangamon County. However, if and when there is, we’ll all rethink how we move about town. So I want to offer some information and perspective that I hope is valuable to you.
- Our facilities team has enhanced how we clean and disinfect surfaces. For the foreseeable future, our team will clean more often and employ the strongest disinfectants we can safely use on door handles, railings, countertops, etc. Also, our KIDS MINISTRY team has enhanced how we clean surfaces, toys and hands during and between our kids gatherings. Of course, you are wise to wash your hands and use hand sanitizer before/after you touch common surfaces.
- Although churches are known for handshakes and hugs, let’s agree to offer a “thumbs up,” a “fist bump” or just a warm “hello” to one another for a while. If you’re a Star Trek fan, Mr. Spock would say this adjustment is only logical while viruses are a concern.
- Your personal level of caution should match your personal health. Most of us have minimal reason to avoid public spaces (at this point). Public health officials are currently indicating that our likelihood of being infected remains “low.” But if contracting a virus would be more dangerous for you than for the average person, please make wise adjustments. The more vulnerable you are to health complications, the more cautious you should be.
- If you have cold or flu symptoms, recover at home. We always prefer to have you with us in-person, but if you become symptomatic, be kind to yourself and considerate of others by avoiding all public spaces. You can always worship with us at TryChurchOnline.com. When in a public space, please be courteous by trapping coughs and sneezes with a sleeve or hand. Now is not the time to prove you’re a trooper, if it means possibly infecting others.
On the other hand, please don’t give the evil-eye to (or attempt to shame) those who may simply be suffering from allergies. If you can’t resist the urge to make a citizen’s arrest on behalf of the germ police, you may need to stay home, also. If Mother Teresa could have compassion on lepers in India, can’t we be gracious with people who sneeze or sniffle?
- Resist both indifference and panic. No one knows how great the spread of the coronavirus will be, but it’s almost certain to be less catastrophic than some suggest – and more serious than others predict. Whatever the case, stay informed, and be discerning about the source of the information you consume. If you’re a worrier, remember that God’s promises apply to every kind of challenge we face, individually or collectively. Jesus said, “Be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” The current virus-scare will not be the end of the world – but even if it were, Jesus remains on duty.
For public health info, follow THIS LINK to the Centers for Disease Control (the oft-mentioned CDC) online page about coronavirus prevention.
NOW BACK TO THE MAIN THING…
Wasn’t At the Movies great?! Your response to it certainly was. If you joined us for the first time or attended more often during ATM, here’s a reminder: God’s word is living and active with or without being illustrated by a movie clip.
Some of us have grooved a new and better worship habit recently. If you are one of those folks, well done! Consider carefully whether or not your previous pattern of church attendance served you well. If not, leave those days behind. Come back to the table every week, humble and hungry. Be engaged and transformed by God’s word.
See you Sunday for the start of Let It Go,
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