I heard a hospital chaplain on the radio who was talking about his experience of caring for people who were dying of COVID in New York. One of the stories he shared was about a soldier who had just died and the impromptu funeral service that took place in the morgue. As his body was being removed from the refrigerator, hospital workers stood at attention. The chaplain said a few words of the eternal hope we have through Jesus Christ. Those present saluted as the body was wheeled past them. No one moved until the hearse pulled away. It was a meaningful moment of pause to show respect for a soldier at a time when the volume of death was so high that there were no moments to spare.
The chaplain shared other stories from the height of the COVID outbreak. Then he talked about what the hospital would mean to him in the future. He said that someday he’ll think back on this and say, “I was there at that hospital when we had more people dying than we could handle, I was there when we held an impromptu funeral, and I was there through the worst of COVID.” When COVID is over, we’re all going to have a COVID story to share. We’ll have our own “I was there” event to talk about.

As I think about all of the “I was there” stories, I think about God who would also say “I was there.” God was there when there were more people dying than the healthcare workers could handle. God was there for a soldier’s impromptu funeral. God was there for the worst of COVID, and God was there through your COVID story too.

7Where shall I go from your Spirit?
    Or where shall I flee from your presence?
8 If I ascend to heaven, you are there!
    If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!
9 If I take the wings of the morning
    and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
10 even there your hand shall lead me,
    and your right hand shall hold me. (Psalm 139:7-10)

On a different topic. Our monthly food drop is this Thursday. Some of our regular volunteers are in quarantine which means that we may be a little shorthanded this month. If you are able to help for even an hour or two, we’d be grateful to have you. We need volunteers from noon -5:30pm.

And another topic. Congratulations to Jane Campbell who has been awarded the Heartland District Woman in Mission of the Year award. It is quite an honor to be selected from all the UMW in the Heartland District for this award. Please join me in congratulating Jane for her service to the UMW.