Dr. Paul Brand wrote a book with Philip Yancy in 1993 titled “Pain: The Gift Nobody Wants.” In the book Dr. Brand described what it was like to be in London during World War 2. There were nightly terrors of falling bombs, but all were sustained by the sense of community that developed below the streets of London in the underground shelters. A sense of comradery developed there as stand-offish Londoners , rich and poor, nobility and just common folk huddled together in their common need, sharing food and being buoyed by each other’s interest and goodwill. They shared stories of common peril and made jokes about possible invasion. Total strangers told stories of the loss of loved ones, and total strangers would gather in a circle of love as they would all weep together. The royal family would frequently come to bolster everybody’s spirits , but all suspected that they came to have their own spirits boosted as well. Above ground they had lost everything, but below ground they relaxed and were strengthened and comforted by friends.
In these challenging times may you go underground to feel the comfort of friends. Thanksgiving friend and family may arrive via zoom this year, and that is fine. Christ will be by your side offering companionship. Go underground this holiday season and feel the peace that surpasses Covid, economic hardship, election strife, all personal concerns. Pain is a gift that nobody wants. However, even in times of pain there is a gift.
Prayers for Thanksgiving and Strength and Comfort this holiday season.
*At “The Well” this evening, we will be lifting up the theme of Thanksgiving. If you are not on the Zoom invitation list for The Well, contact Vikki Luce email@example.com *
Still in one peace,
Pastor David J. Jensen