MIDWEEK MESSAGE 7
Happy Wednesday OVCF family and friends! I hope this finds you doing well and being safe and healthy. And if you have children at home…surviving. 🙂 I was listening to a leadership podcast just yesterday and one of the things the interviewer said was the pandemic has lost its “shine.” (My words since I can’t remember exactly what he said). In Bill-speak he said the first 30 days were doable but now the people just want it over. I guess he never interviewed me. I would tell him the first 30 days were not doable because I didn’t like the whole social-distancing thing. It has been 8 weeks since I have hugged my own daughter, and of course, you. It is hard not to do so to people you love.
But my “Drive-Bys” have helped. As I will share this week in my sermon I was told at the very beginning of my ministry not to get close to people in my ministry. That was okay for him because he was more like that. My personality does not allow that. So being quarantined and “shut away” was hard. The Drive-Bys have been a fun part of several of my afternoons the past 3 weeks. I am so grateful for those who were home and at least came to the door, or the porch, or even the yard, to say Hi and smile and wave and laugh. For those concerned, we kept our distance. I may be seen as irritatingly cold about the whole mask and glove thing, but I have kept my distance so as not to be totally “off the rails.” (I know what some of you are thinking right now so don’t!). 🙂 Anyway, I have had an absolute blast doing the Drive-Bys. In case you aren’t sure what that is I drive into a person’s driveway and pray for those in the house. Then I either text or leave a card in their door to let them know they “have been the victim of a drive-by.” Your response has been so encouraging. I have been to at least 30 houses so far and plan to do more either today or tomorrow.
One of my concerns during this whole mess has been how can OVCF help others. So far, we have escaped the dire circumstances many are finding themselves in, but we have many healthcare workers, response people, etc in our community. After several cancellations due to situation that have come up for them, I am taking lunch to Sheriff Hobbs and Detective Teuton today (unless something else comes up) to see how the church can help. I then plan to visit other leaders in the community to see how the church can make a difference. Would you mind praying about that please? We are not in town where we could offer food. Besides, there are others doing that and there is no sense in reinventing the wheel. I am proud of the folks from OVCF who have helped by making masks for workers. Someone
ordered and provided a slew of hand sanitizer to the sheriff for distribution. He wants to be anonymous. But he did it in the name of the church. And I know several others who have helped in other ways. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
Thanks to all of you who have sent back the surveys. They have been really helpful in our decisions of when to reopen and what course of action to take when we do. I speak for Ryan and Diana when I say we read each one and used them in formulating our “getting back together plan.” By the way, there is an attachment to this Midweek Message with our course of action. The leadership has also given some great input during our Monday afternoon meeting.
This time away has hopefully led all of us to reevaluate what is important to us. One of the most heartening things for me has been to hear from many of you via text or seeing it on FB (via Jo) on how much you miss being together. It has been over a year since I have had a Diet Dr Pepper or any pop for that matter. I can honestly say there are times I crave one. That is my hope and prayer for you: that you miss being together so much that you crave it. I want my passion for Jesus to be like that. In Ezekiel 37 we find the story of Ezekiel’s vision of the dry bones coming to life. (A future sermon sometime this summer). Please take the time to read it. That valley of dry bones is a picture of me and you. The bones are dried up; all hope is lost; they are cut off. (v.11). But when Ezekiel prophesied the dry bones came to life. (Verses 1-10). That is a great picture of how many find themselves in these tough times. If you are there, I’d like to ask you to pray for God to bring life to your heart and renew it.
Once again, I am wordy. Do you sense a pattern here? 🙂 So it is time to close this message. If I can pray for you, how about letting me know?
Don’t forget to check out the attachment about our course of action for reopening.