A SPIRIT OF SACRIFICE
April 2, 2020 | Pastor's Corner
This health crisis is challenging many of us to make sacrifices in our lives. Some are huge, such as those made by exhausted health care workers around the world, desperately trying to keep patients alive while avoiding the illness themselves.
Other sacrifices fall more in the category of inconveniences. It is inconvenient when events are canceled, schools are closed, and travel is limited. It is inconvenient to wash our hands intentionally and regularly.
But this kind of sacrifice is at the very center of our faith. Every time we gather around the Lord’s Table, and we hope that will be soon we celebrate the powerful way Christ showed us how to love others. He sacrificed everything in self giving love for us, and he invited us to do the same. In turn, we die to ourselves through inconveniences and more in order to love those around us. Truly loving others will always cost us something.
Actions that may not entirely make sense to us can have huge effects. Scientists point to the 1918 flu when St. Louis proactively and aggressive closed its schools to prevent infections. Death rates in the city were about one third those in Pittsburgh, which was much slower to close its schools. Thousands of lives were saved.
We may grumble about our resist changing our habits, especially if it’s unclear what’s in it for us. But we need to remember that many of these actions are more about protecting others. Perhaps the invitation amidst this crisis is to embrace the inconveniences fully, and then move beyond them to seek out the best ways to serve those who are most in need.
Let us continue praying for a swift end to this pandemic and that we all may come through it safely.