Would Jesus Social Distance?

This week’s podcast takes on our current expectation to social distance. After several months of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are all undoubtedly feeling the effects of social distancing and the profound impact it has had on our relationships.

While social distancing is a fairly new concept for us, it is something Jesus would have been very familiar with when he lived on earth some 2,000 years ago.

What did his approach to social distancing look like? And how does that impact our lives today? This week, Jo and Vince explore some of the many challenges we face in this season, and how God remarkably meets us in each one.

How has this discussion opened up new ways for you to invite Jesus into new and challenging times?

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Transcript for this podcast in this PDF:
AA Would Jesus Social Distance?.pdf (88.1 KB)

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There were so many great thoughts in this podcast. I can’t possibly comment on all of them. I especially appreciated Jo’s questions halfway through the podcast.

  • What is it that God is doing that might be a new thing?
  • What could we be learning in this season?
  • What what is it in us that perhaps we have a chance to reflect on and to change?

Later in the podcast they mentioned the very things I’ve known God wants me to change. First, I need to take more time for my family. Since my sisters and I are still single, we live with our parents, but we have all gotten busy with our careers and ministries, and we don’t spend focused time together the way we did when we were children. We’ve had more family time during the shutdown, and I want to maintain this somehow even when things open up.

Secondly, I need to stop and be quiet more often. Vince described it so well.

So there’s a real opportunity for many of us in this time when we’re home to not just spend the time trying to find new ways to distract ourselves, but asking us that question. This is forcing me to be closer to God than normal. This is forcing me to not have him at an arm’s length in some ways. How does that make me feel? And if there’s uncomfort they’re asking why and having that conversation in a really open way with God. This could be a very significant use of this time.

I thought the COVID shutdown would finally let me slow down. However, God blessed me with ways to continue my job and ministries from home. I am thankful, but I also know I haven’t learned what He wants me to learn.

So I’ll sign off Connect for the evening and enjoy reading a book on the deck or maybe just gaze at the blue sky and enjoy my heavenly Father.

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Your application of the COVID struggles are lovely, Jennifer! You’ve already looked at ways to change some things in favor of relationships. I think that’s something we can all relate to in some way or another. Relationships to family, to employers, church, communities all recently experienced revision in some way. And we have a God who is all about relationship!

I really liked the point that Vince made:

I realized going back over this passage that this ancient book,
the Bible, is, in one sense, the antidote to social distancing. It’s been that antidote for
centuries prior to Zoom or WebEx or Zencaster, which we’re using right now, or or any
of the great platforms and technologies that were using to keep us connected today.

The Bible challenges our natural social distancing tendencies. We can put on a happy face on Zoom, but the Bible is the mirror from which we view our true self through the Holy Spirit. It challenges us.

For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account. Hebrews 4:12-13

But the really amazing part is, God loves me with an unconditional love eventhough I have a long way to go in my Christlikeness! Because He knows me better than I know myself, I can be frank and honest with Him.

And He holds out forgiveness, grace and mercy without throwing justice under the bus.

I recall a lecture from Michael Ramsden I heard about a year ago. He made such an amazing point when he said, “The world tells you that forgiveness is earned.” He went on to make the point that real forgiveness cannot be earned because it’s a gift, and it comes in the love of God through Christ.

Thankfully Jesus is not limited by closed doors, internet connection, or two arm’s length. He doesn’t air hug with His mask on, but rather comes to live in and with us.

As I was studying the Sermon on the Mount before all the lockdowns took place, I was moved by how different the world would look if we took these beautiful 2 chapters of instruction from the Lord and put them to work each day. It really calls us to an “other” way of thinking and living to die to self daily which can only make us better at relationships. This calls the Christian to courageous living.

But I take heart that I’m not called to perfection, but rather close relationship.

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Hmmm… would Jesus actually do that!!?

Well the person who actually pushed for a modern day radical suggestion of not washing hands!

Or healed leper’s!

The only way that Jesus would social distance was if the Father Told him to!
Jesus was basically Freedom personified!!!

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The podcast did mention healing lepers. :slight_smile: Have you had a chance to listen to it? I’d enjoy hearing your thoughts on what Vince and Jo Vitale said.

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I haven’t listened to it yet, but I am listening to it now! ( I know I need help with my research skills, I usually jump right in! God help me) :grin:

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