The true meaning of love one’s neighbor is not that it is a command from God which we are to fulfill, but that through it and in it we meet God.
-Martin Buber

Back in March of 2020 the shut down arrived with the swiftness of an automatic garage door that was suddenly dropping and sending everyone scrambling. Now we are in the process of re-emerging but it feels more like a slow drip of a faucet. We dance politely around unwritten rules of social etiquette: when to wear a mask, when to gather indoors, when to shake hands or elbow bump. And the rules keep changing from the health experts.

Yesterday a friend said to me, “My granddaughter was born during the pandemic and I haven’t yet met her but I’m so excited to take a trip now and finally hold her in my arms.” And another friend called me saying, “I’ve been seeing my therapist on zoom and today we met for the first time in his office and when I walked in and saw his face I burst into tears.” And my friends at Scrabble club discussed how we don’t want to lose the solitude and time for contemplation that we discovered over these 15 months as we begin reweaving the social fabric that is so life giving.

The Jewish mystic and 20th century theologian Martin Buber has long been a favorite of mine and recently a friend reminded me of his quote on what happens when human beings gather together.

When two people relate to each other authentically and humanly, God is the electricity that surges between them.

One of the reasons I felt called into ministry is because I love spending time with people. It has been too long since we last gathered together. I can’t wait to see you in person.

As Buber writes “All real living is meeting.”

Grace and Peace,