Aloha Mai Kākou:
As we all continue to work through the ever-changing dynamics being forced upon us by the COVID-19 pandemic, I’m encouraged by so many of you and the ongoing efforts to maintain our connectedness to each other and our communities. I’ve been invited to participate in lots of virtual worship meetings, calls, “watch parties” and even happy hours via zoom! It is so encouraging to see the energy and spirit displayed by everyone!
A few weeks ago, I spoke to you about the routines in our lives. They provide us with normalcy and a sense of comfort that things are operating as they should.
Routines help us to keep our lives orderly. They help us to make sense of the world around us. Not only that, but routines are critical to our health and well-being and can actually strengthen our immune systems as well as reduce anxiety.
I wanted to share a few of my routines and some encouragement, which is helping shape the way I’m managing my day. For me, I wake up at the same time every day, no excuses, no exceptions.
Each day I begin with a check on my own health and wellness and then check with my family, Doug. Then I take some time to reflect with God on the day before and look forward to seeing what today will bring. I pray Psalm 23 and the Lordʻs prayer and from the office of Compline: “O God, your unfailing providence sustains the world we live in and the life we live: Watch over those, both day and night, who work while others sleep, and grant that we may never forget that our common life depends upon each other’s toil; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.”
Then I take some time to review my schedule for the day ahead, check on the health and well-being of my extended family and loved-ones, and then, I schedule calls to family members and loved ones throughout the first part of my morning—especially those on the mainland.
I think it’s critical right now that we need to literally pour ourselves into those around us, to be focused on the people in our own circles: our neighbors who may be lonely or frightened, our aunties and uncles who, especially now, need just some conversation, and those we come into contact with as part of our routines: grocery store workers who need an extra smile and kind word, post office employees who risk their health each day getting us our mail and packages, and the many others that are working so that we may stay home and do our part to help keep everyone safe and well.
Then I spend some time keeping my environment around me tidy. Keeping things picked up and dishes done etc, literally helps to “stir up the chi” and not surprisingly, helps to keep my mood up.
And before the day ends, I give thanks for everyone I’ve talked to and prayed for, give thanks for rain that nourishes the earth and sun that warms the body, and I give thanks for the never failing love of God who is with us even as we walk through the valley of the shadow of death.
Try as best as you can to maintain your own routines and rhythms, and keep up the good work building up your connections with one another.
And above all, rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. May the God of Peace sanctify you entirely, and may your spirit and soul and body be kept sound. The One who calls you IS faithful and will do this. The grace of our Savior Jesus Christ be with you and your house.