“For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body…If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honoured, all rejoice together. Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it. (verses from 1 Corinthians 12)
I once was a part of a team that planned Methodist youth retreats. One activity that we would do with the young people involved a ball of yarn (wool). Everyone would gather in a large circle. One person would hold the yarn, grabbing tightly to the end of the exposed thread, and then would throw the ball to someone across the circle. This person would catch the ball, hold on to a bit of yarn before throwing the ball to someone across the way, etc. In time, a design would appear looking like a spider’s web or a Native American dreamcatcher. Once everyone was holding a bit of the yarn, we would ask one of the youth to gently pull on her or his part of the wool. One little tug, and we all felt it. This moved the whole design, showing an interconnectedness between all of us.
If the Covid 19 pandemic has taught us anything, it is that we do not live in isolation but are connected to others for good or ill. What affects one of us, affects all of us. During our lock down days, we appeared as individuals on Zoom screens- socially distant but one unit. Some of the members of our community contracted the virus, and when they became well again, we rejoiced. Others lost their lives to the virus, and with their families and friends, we grieved. Our heart strings were tugged, and from the safety of our homes, we offered our prayers and phone calls.
During these pandemic days, we watched in horror at the effects of the sins of racism, and as a world, we mourned, we marched, we protested. What affects one of us affects us all.
As restrictions lift one by one, each of us is deciding when it would be safe to come out, to gather again. If you decide to re- enter church, know that we’ll be double checking that we have the correct phone and email for you. The church, like cafes, restaurants, barbers, hair salons… will need to keep track of us for test and trace reasons- another sign of our connectedness.
As Christians, we are the body of Christ. We are One. We all follow the One Lord, who bids us to love and serve as He did. Through Him, who is the centre of our faith, we are woven together into a beautiful design- a web in the kingdom of God.
“Bind us together Lord, with cords that cannot be broken. Bind us together, Lord in love.”