Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
How do the people of God respond during a quarantine? The Bible doesn’t give explicit directions.
But there is an obscure story in the Old Testament that I believe does give us some guidance.
In Numbers 12 Miriam, Moses’ sister, is struck by a dreaded disease. The disease is sometimes thought to be leprosy or some other contagion.
Moses prays saying, “O God, please heal her.” But God doesn’t heal her. At least not right away.
Instead, God says Miriam is to be quarantined for seven days. And what do the people do while Miriam is in quarantine?
“So Miriam was shut out of the camp for seven days, and the people did not set out on the march until Miriam had been brought in again.”
They could have gone on with their lives.
They could have kept on marching toward the promised land and let Miriam catch up after she got better.
But that is not what they did.
The people of God wait until they can all move forward together.
This time of quarantine and social distancing is hard on all of us. But as the people of God, we do not leave others behind.
We make sacrifices for the sake of others. Especially for those who are weak, or sick, or at greater risk.
The ways of this world are “Every man, every woman for themselves.”
The way of the Kingdom of God is we wait until we can all mover forward together.
I know it’s hard to wait. But waiting, as hard as it is, might be one of the most Christ-like things we can do in days like these.
As we wait, let’s use this time to draw near to God and to those we love.
Grace & Peace,
Rev. Donnie Wilkinson