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Thoughts from Dianna...
This morning I was reading my daily devotion. The scripture was a familiar and favorite one: Ecclesiastes 3, A Time for Everything. We all know it, this morning I soaked in every line. The writer of the accompanying devotion is a woman pastor who prided herself on taking very good care of her congregation. Visited the sick, attended all the children's events as well as all church events and meetings. Of course, her schedule was very full and tending her flock filled her days and evenings. Here's the rest of her story – she was married and had a lovely family including precious grandchildren. Over the years, because of her never ending TO-DO list for her church family and other obligations - she missed trips with her husband and family, missed the kids sports games and even many meals. Looking forward to retirement when she could travel and spend time with her husband and kids. Then her husband had a sudden heart attack and died just before her retirement.
Most of us know of a similar experience bringing on regret about missed opportunities and perhaps, misplaced priorities. We always think there's time... I doubt there's precious few of us who can't find a lesson from this. But, what struck me today, is the depth of the disconnection many of us have felt over this year of “social distancing”. Holidays, weddings, funerals, church, club meetings, coffee with a friend, family meals, then gradually we disconnect a little more...
Gradually, over time. in this last year, we may have become more isolated and friends we started out calling frequently at the onset of the “quarantine” - we're now calling only occasionally. Perhaps even resorted to social media or texts as our primary connection to others. This, in my opinion, has zapped our spirits.
This morning's devotion has challenged me all day, nagged at me. What can I do to understand my priorities and personal values so later find myself with fewer regrets? How can I be more present for family and friends( even strangers) during this period of isolation and distancing? How many people can I call ( and not text) to hear their voice and not rely on an emoji? LOL.
Ecclesiastes 3:5 says “there is a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing”. We've had a year of the refraining from embracing – let's start embracing again – at least by phone. And just think! Soon many of us will be vaccinated and we might actually hug again!