These days have been hard for me. Being alone in my condo takes me back 15 years when I was in complete isolation from family, friends, and the church I loved so deeply. It felt like a punishment back then. And, in some ways, it feels like a punishment now. It almost seems like our whole society has been given a great big time out. Our current situation makes me miss our community, our worship, and our precious time together.

I know this social distancing and staying at home has been hard on all of you as well. It creates a sense of anxiety and stress. Even when we have enough supplies to live on, it feels like we are being deprived of the gift of each other and the gift of freedom.

I wish I had some great insight to how long this was going to last. I do not. I don’t have any idea how many will get sick or how many will die. I do not know how long the economy will be broken. I simply know that I can not give in to the fear and brokenness. I must turn to prayer and to a relationship with God.

In Sarah Young’s book Jesus Calling for Easter, the author puts these words in the mouth of our Lord. “Be constant in prayer­ at all times, but especially when you are struggling. During trials, you need close communication with Me more than ever. Your ability to concentrate may be hampered by stress and fatigue. So make full use of the amazing source of strength within you-My Spirit.

Sarah Young’s words remind me that my prayers don’t need to be perfect, they just need to be real. That it is ok for me to cry out to God in loneliness, in fear, or in anxiety. And, in the act of coming before God just as I am, He will allow the power of His Spirit to pour over me. God is ready to give us the grace we need to get through this crisis. The strength of the Holy Spirit is greater than this man-made virus. The Spirit is the one who can grant us an intimacy with God which will dissolve our fears and anxieties.

Right now, we need God. We need a new perspective and strength that comes from above. God is so present. He is within our homes. He is with our leaders as they try to help us through this crisis. He is intimate with us. We need only to communicate with God and open our heart to receive His presence and grace.

Much love and many blessings,
Fr. Dale