Most of us know the story of Jericho's demise. The first lesson for today's Daily Office readings is the Prequel. The Lord instructs that for six days, the army should parade around Jericho, followed by seven priests blowing constantly on shofars (trumpets made from a ram's horn). It's a wonder the people of Jericho didn't go nuts before the walls came tumbling down on the seventh day.
There's a contrast between this story and those from the early chapters of the Exodus. The people patiently did what they were told to do and didn't complain.
The pandemic is taxing our patience. The Gospel for today includes Jesus' institution of the Lord's Supper. We last celebrated Eucharist together on March 8th. It might be easier to be patient if God gave us a plan with clear instructions, as was true for the Israelites parading around Jericho.
Perhaps God has done just that. The second lesson today from Romans reminds us that Christians are called to be good citizens. Right now, that admonition requires us to do all we can to prevent more pressure on our health care system. The number of hospitalized patients in our county has gone from under 400 at the end of June to over 500 now. Hospital staff are pleading for relief.
Parading was a duty of faith for the Israelites. Our duty of faith is to relish online worship and avoid risk of contagion. But we're pretty good at parades too!