Musing 2.5.21

God of the Pandemic,        

    Last July, I mused with you that, in March, I thought this would be over by July for sure.

         Yet, here we are in February,

                 still wearing masks,

                 still social distancing,

                  still not gathering.

         Yet, here we are in February,

                 still a divided country,

                       politically,              

                       racially.  Maybe,

                             even moreso.

                                 Each day seems to bring the report of

                                               violence and another murder.

Things seem so mono-chromatic and mono-tonous,

                      One color –same cloudy gray.

                      One tone – same news and film clips.

We flip the news channels,

                 the repetitive stories of political division and COVID,                      

                        endless speculation and anger and statistics,

                               endlessly cycling.                       

                       We grow numb and only half listen,

                              half deaf.

                We hear it hourly, so

                       we tend not to listen fully.

                               It becomes background noise.              

                 Too often the commentator is so

                          overhyped, overdramatic

                                 that we shut down and tune out.

We flip the entertainment channels.

                   We search for a new series.

                        We solicit suggestions;

                                    we bond over a series.

                   But after a while,

                     the shows begin to blur and merge;

                                 diminishing returns.

                           We only half watch,

                                        it is just to have something on.

We flip the sports channels.

                     It is hard to engage and care

                              when the stands are empty and games often postponed;

                                   the games don’t seem all that important.

Life has to be more.

God of the Pandemic,

                      We are weary.

                             We are world weary.                       

                       Words like malaise, sloth, boredom, and futility

                                      come to mind and

                                                sink into our being.

                         We start to think that there is nothing new under the sun.

                          We start to think that life is just a chasing after the wind.

If there is any Bible figure with whom we identify, it is

                         Qoheleth, the Preacher,

                                  the author of Ecclesiastes.

                          Qoheleth has been where we are.                       

                           Qoheleth is a fellow traveler.

He stubbornly refuses naïve and easy answers.

He washes us clean of illusions.

He rejects shallow expectations.

He purges our arrogance.

He is skeptical.

He is doubtful.

He clears the air.

He prepares us for reality.

He prepares us for you.

God of the Pandemic,

       like Qoheleth, we voice our malaise,

               we could call it whining,

                       or we could call it praying.

God of Reality, we are ready for you.

We are ready for reality.

Thank you for listening to this rambling.

It makes a difference.

It makes me different.

Amen.