Third Week of Advent
I rejoiced with those who said to me, “Let us go to the house of the LORD.”
Since childhood, I have loved going to church. I grew up attending a small country church, and every Sunday was as much a reunion with family and friends as it was a time to worship God, sing hymns, and study the Bible. Church services, for me, have always been about communion with God and community with others.
During the past two years, as we have dealt with the restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic, church connection has largely been online. Our homes have become the “house of the Lord,” with help from Vimeo and YouTube. We can still care for others, even if social distancing, sanitizers and masks are required. It’s possible to lift up family and friends with a thoughtful social media post, email, text or call, even if we can’t visit in person. And on the occasions when we can go to church services in person, perform acts of service or spend time with others, we treasure those times even more than we did before.
Our waiting for the end of pandemic restrictions is much like our preparation for the coming of Jesus during Advent. Even when everything seems dismal and dispiriting, we know that the time will come to celebrate the birth of Jesus. And as Christians, we also look forward to the day when Jesus will come again, when we will gather with Him and our loved ones in the “house of the Lord” – His Kingdom – in a joyful reunion for eternity, never to be parted again.