What do we learn in the wilderness?

-Pastor Miriam Smith


  I’ll be honest, church, I thought things would be back to normal by now. Back in March, when September felt a million miles away, I think I assumed that the pandemic would have wrapped up by the time school started. Instead, we are still working out how to take care of our business and attend to the needs of others all while managing the continuing concerns related to the pandemic. Standing in lines, spaced apart, with tape on the floors is nothing unusual these days. Worship and church life have moved online or onto people’s patios with masks and 6 feet of distance. 


  I have a hunch I am not the only one longing for things to be the way they were back before the virus outbreak. We want to know when we will be finished with doing things differently. We want to know when we can stop and when this journey will be finished. Though not identical, these are concerns that are very present in the book of Exodus in the Bible. After being freed from slavery in Egypt, the Hebrew people follow Moses out into the desert to journey to the Promised Land. It takes them 40 years to arrive, and in the process they learn so much about what it means for them to be God’s people. 


  In the month of September, I’ll be preaching on some of the things that God shared with them out there in the wilderness all those years ago. There is much we can learn and much that will sound familiar to our own lives right now. A little later in September, we are planning to begin worshiping on Sunday mornings in the building. It’s going to be different. We will not be back to how we were before. Depending on the continued decline of virus activity in our area, we are going to be taking it one step at a time together. I hope you will stay connected and come with us as we see what God can teach us as we go. 


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