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Unexpected Grief



I was out walking my (adorable!!) puppy the other day in our neighborhood and that’s when I saw something that made my heart leap with joy. 

My sweet friends’ van!!!!

I can spot it from a mile away.

I saw the van turn the corner and pull into my driveway.  I watched as my friend jumped out of the van and placed something on my doorstep.  She gave me a little wave and then jumped back into her van.  I then watched as the van began to pull out of my driveway.  

*DEEP SIGH*

It all happened so fast and in that quick moment my road and the distance between us felt twice as far as it actually was.  I didn’t even make it within 6 feet of her in in time to see her eyes or smile before the van was pulling out of the driveway . 

They waited until I was closer so we could all wave; her babies were in the backseat (OK they’re all teenagers who are taller than me but I’ve known them their whole entire lives.) and I could only see their silhouettes waving back at me instead.  Not their eyes.  Not their smiles. 

*TEARS WELLING*

I made my way up to my door and found the sweet gift of cookies and a card. 

*SNIFF*

I realized for the first time since this quarantine began how much I miss those other people in my life who are not sheltering in place with me; those friends and family; those people who are part of my inner circle, my village, my belonging.

*CHANTING IN MY HEAD ‘Hold it together girl.  Do NOT ugly cry.   You’re about to walk into the house and there are people in there who might notice’*

I was grieving something I didn’t even know I missed until I saw the silhouettes drive away.  .  I hadn’t realized how intimate, powerful, personal, and dare I say holy a personal encounter can be with those people who we hold close in our hearts but can’t be with right now. 

You too, maybe?

Yet here we are. 

Sheltering at home. 

For how long? 

We don’t exactly know. 

Some of us are with family. 

Others of us are by ourselves.

All of us longing, grasping, and looking, for connection. 

So hear these words from Romans 12:5 “So we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually we are members one of another.”

Dear ones, because of Jesus we are one with Christ and one with each other. 

Because of Jesus we are one with Christ and one with each other. 

Even while we are separated and unable to gather with others. 

How grateful I am for the other ways we can connect during this time.  For the time being these alternatives are just going to have to be enough. 

How will you connect this week?

Who will you call?  Email?  Zoom? Video chat?  Text? Send a card?  Do a drive by just to honk and wave?  Bake cookies for to leave on doorsteps? Decorate a driveway for with chalk messages and pictures?  Pray for? 

Here is a connect challenge: 

Find a piece of paper and list out 5-7 names of people that you are going to connect with this week.   

Try to include at least one family member, one friend, one person from church, and maybe even someone who you know is sheltering in place without other family. 

Assign each person a day of the week and commit to connecting with them somehow on those days for the remainder of this quarantine. 

It’ll be good for your soul and for theirs. 

Friends remember, although things are different right now we can still be together while apart; we still carry the responsibility to be the Church.  Our world, our country, our community, our loved ones need us to be salt and light, grace and love, hope and peace perhaps now more than ever.

Connected in Christ,

Pastor Becky


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9412 228th Street North, Port Byron, Illinois 61275

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