Prayerfully, we are near the end of this coronavirus pandemic. As we see more people vaccinated, there is hope that soon we will be able to resume some normalcy. The question that comes to my mind and to my heart, “How will the houses of worship respond post-pandemic?” There needs to be a plan that’s well-thought out, that allows the church to continue to do the work of the Kingdom.
There are countless lives to be saved. The harvest is ready, but the laborers are few. Thus, we need to reimagine how we can serve God’s people. Many changes have occurred over these last two years. Who would have ever thought that we would be depending on social media? But due to social media, we have been able to reach more people than ever before. For those who say that people will not return to the houses of worship, as they remain comfortable in their pajamas, watching one service after another, I would argue strongly that this line of thinking is shallow. It is important that we as the people of God speak with a prophetic voice and take full advantage of the opportunity that God has given us to touch the lives of people. As one thinketh, so he is. If you think negatively, you will respond in a negative way.
I believe with all my heart that God has given us a wonderful opportunity for the houses of worship to be a lighthouse amid this dark and dismal pandemic. In other words, the prophet Isaiah, chapter 43:19, “For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.”
We have a wonderful opportunity to step out on faith and have the houses of worship become alive with new and exciting opportunities, making impact upon the world: to be engaged in social justice ministry, to bring down the walls of racial bigotry, and all the things we face, day-by-day. I am not in denial; I am a realist. But I am also a man of faith. I do not want to preach gloom and doom but let God’s people know that the houses of worship are still alive. We have been given new opportunities. We simply say WOW: Wonderful Opportunities Waiting.
I am looking forward to the opportunity to reach beyond the walls of Bethlehem and share the Word of God, not only using social media, but developing new services at different times to meet the needs of God’s people. I am excited, full of passion, and trusting God, that He still reigns and rules. We pray for houses of worship, synagogues, mosques, temples and all of those places by which worship takes place.
Remember, this may be the first time that we have experienced a pandemic, but it is not the first time for this nation or this world. I look forward to doing the Lord’s work in this post-pandemic. To engage in fellowship and relationships, to do creative work for God. We look to visit nursing homes and hospitals, to touch the lives of our youth, that God might get the glory. As we see people in the stands for sports events and people in theaters and restaurants, enjoying the blessings of life and social activities, why not have the places of worship be a place where people can come and experience the love and power of God? Find a house of worship and take advantage of the opportunity to serve people.
There are countless houses of worship, and they are dedicated, committed servants of God -- committed servants of God who stand ready to proclaim the word of God. If we ever needed the Lord before, we surely need Him now. Visit a synagogue, mosque or house of worship and seek to make a difference in our world. We still have racism, sexism, and antisemitism, they have not gone away. Let us unite our hearts together and listen to the words of the profit Micah, “And what does the Lord require of you to act justly and to have mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” As a member of the Wissahickon Faith Community, we are committed to have all of our houses of worship, serve God and love people.
This is one of a series of columns by the Wissahickon Faith Community.